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  • 1 cup uncooked White Quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1-2 cups cooked white or red beans (rinse beans first if using a canned variety)
  • 4 plum tomatoes, chopped
  • ½ cup Kalamata olives, pitted and sliced
  • 1 bunch green onions sliced
  • 2 tablespoons red minced onion
  • 1 small fennel bulb, core removed and chopped
  • ¼ cup pine nuts, lightly toasted or substitute with 1/3 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/4 – 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large lemon juiced with zest
  • 1 shallot minced for salad dressing
  • sea salt and cracked pepper to taste
  • 1 Boston lettuce, leaves separated into “cups”
  • 1 small red cabbage or radicchio separated into “cups” (optional)
  • fresh basil and mint leaves, or try Thai basil


  1. Rinse quinoa and place in cook pot.
  2. Add 2 cups of water, bring to boil, cover, and reduce heat to simmer for about 15 minutes. All liquid should be absorbed, remove from heat and rest covered for 10 minutes, fluff lightly with fork.
  3. Place quinoa in a mixing bowl and toss with beans, tomatoes, olives, fennel, and nuts.

Prepare Dressing

Whisk together oil, lemon juice and zest.  Add minced shallot and blend.  Toss with quinoa and season with salt and pepper before serving.


Spoon mixture into lettuce cups and serve with sprigs of fresh mint and basil leaves.  Serve with plenty of napkins. Makes about 12 lettuce cups.  Serve for lunch or as a fun appetizer!

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