The basil plant on my balcony is missing the sunshine and turned anemic. I wanted to finish an open bag of quinoa before the resident mouse does. (Altogether now: eeeeeeeew!) I went a little crazy buying tomatoes at the market this weekend. 101 Cookbooks was useful as always. And presto: a quinoa bowl with basil “pesto”, tomatoes and grilled zucchini was dinner.
It is not this
but we found it does the trick.
Quinoa bowl with summer vegetables and pesto
Pound a large handful of basil leaves into a paste in a mortar with some salt. Add a small clove of garlic (pressed, or you can pound some more, depending on the kind of day you had). Add a tablespoon or so of good olive oil, to thin the paste a bit. Grate a little pile of parmesan into the mortar and mix it into the green sludge. Then add oil until the pesto is a thick pouring consistency. Cook quinoa according to package instructions.
Slice a zucchini into thick rounds, and grill them in a hot grill pan until soft. Chop a few tomatoes into small pieces. Mix the pesto into the cooked quinoa, then mix in the tomato pieces and the zucchini disks, chopped into bite-sized pieces. Divide over two bowls.
If you have an avocado lying around, slice it up and top the bowls with it. Finish with some sea salt. And if you have some fresh lemon juice to sprinkle on top, so much the better.