Yesterday evening I had dinner with good friends Kristin and Libby. We grilled portobello mushroom burgers, drank wine and sat outside on Libby’s patio enjoying the warm(ish) MN weather. It was a very good night.

We ate veggies with delicious hummus from the Minneapolis Farmers Market (Deanna’s hummus).

Kristin made an excellent caprese quinoa salad.

Quinoa Caprese from (adapted from Too Many Chefs, original recipe from Shape, May 2006)


1 cup quinoa
14 oz. vegetable stock
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
3 ounces fresh mozzarella, diced
1 cup torn basil leaves
2 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 1/4 tablespoon olive oil
3 cloves garlic
Salt and pepper


Rinse the quinoa thoroughly. In a medium saucepan, bring the stock to a boil. Add the quinoa, reduce heat and simmer about 12-15 minutes until the liquid is absorbed. The quinoa should be tender. transfer to a large bowl and toss/stir to help it cool down to room temperature.

Smash your garlic cloves, removing the papery outer peel. Heat the oil in a small skillet over low and add the garlic. Sautee over low heat, stirring occasionally for about five minutes. Strain the garlic out of the oil and let the oil cool.

Stir the cherry tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella into the quinoa.

With a whisk or fork beat the lemon juice and oil together. Pour over the quinoa and toss well. Season to taste.
We had huge portobello burgers topped with blue cheese. Yum. Just as tasty as a beef burger. Seriously.

This was a great segue into the holiday weekend. Erik and I have plans with friends up north at a cabin. There will be beer, bonfires, lawn games, burgers and hopefully no rain! We’re also hanging with good friends Kiefer and Diane and I can’t wait for an entire evening of quality time and good food. Monday brings another BBQ, this time with my family. I haven’t seen then in over a week and am going through a bit of withdrawal after spending 24/7 with them in Florida!

What are your weekend plans? I hope they are jam packed with fun!