Quinoa & Smoked Tofu Salad (Vegan)

This super healthy salad is not just refreshing but also quick and easy to make.
Loaded with protein and plant goodness you’ll never want to say no to trying this one for sure!
 
How I developed this recipe
 
I don’t know about many people out there, but I love tofu. It’s not only healthy but also a great vegan substitute for Indian cottage cheese (paneer). Smoked tofu is extra good for its unique flavour and thus elevates this salad a further bit more. 
Quinoa is one of the superfoods most health freaks are now aware of for its high dietary fibre content, high protein and lower carbs compared to wheat and rice. It’s not only a healthier carb substitute option, but also very delicious and easy to prepare when paired up beautifully in clever recipes.
I had always wanted to come up with a great recipe with two of my above favourites that’s easy to follow and this accidental recipe turns out to be perfect not just when you are on a diet but also good enough to impress your guests at the dinner table.
 
What’s special about this recipe
 
High in plant protein—loaded with fibre rich low GI quinoa and soy protein-rich tofu, a serving of this salad is sure to fulfill a major portion of your day’s protein requirement for staying fit and healthy. It’s an ultimate guilt-free lean protein salad you’d choose over and over again.
 
Veggie rich- It has got a lot of colourful veggies and green herbs- tomatoes, bell peppers, cucumbers, parsley, mint- that’s both a treat for your eyes and rich in vitamins and minerals as well.
 
 
What you’ll need
 
1 cup quinoa 
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2teaspoon of freshly ground peppercorns 
2 grated garlic cloves
1/2 cup chopped cucumber 
1/3 chopped cherry tomatoes 
1/2 cup chopped yellow bell peppers 
1/4 cup chopped parsley leaves 
2 tablespoons chopped mint leaves 
1 cup chopped smoked tofu
 
How to make
 
. Bring water to boil with half a teaspoon of salt and cook the quinoa in it keeping the deep bottom pan closed- for about 15-20 minutes until the quinoa has cooked fluffy enough soaking up all the water. 
. At this point, turn off the heat, remove the lid, gently fluff up the quinoa with your spoon and let it cool down.
. Meantime, prepare the dressing by whisking up the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, pepper and salt in a small bowl.
.Add the cooled down quinoa, tofu, veggies and the herbs into a bigger bowl and pour in the tangy dressing. Give it a good and gentle mix just enough to combine.
.Serve it right away in your favourite salad bowl.
 
Notes, tips and suggestions
 
-You could use plain tofu or other flavoured tofu (eg. coriander tofu) instead of the smoked tofu if you don’t prefer smokey flavour to the salad.
-You could even use drained cooked/canned chickpeas or sprouts as a substitute for tofu, if you are not a fan of tofu or if you are allergic to soy.
-Choice of veggies are also partially upto you, for you could totally feel free to add in more veggies or substitute veggies you don’t prefer in this recipe with peas, corn, olives, jalapeños,etc.

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