Quinoa Salad with Black Beans and Toasted Cumin Seeds

This week I made one of my favorite summer salads: Quinoa Salad with Black Beans and Toasted Cumin Seeds from Appetite for Reduction.

It's a complete meal that includes whole grains (quinoa), lean protein (black beans), and veggies. It's delicious and takes only 15 minutes to make if you have your quinoa cooked. It's also very light (5 WeightWatchers PointsPlus values), and the flavors get better the next day. I made it on Sunday and have been eating it for lunch this week.

Note that the toasted cumin seeds make this salad, so splurge for a bottle (you can find them in any spice section) if you don't already have them. The smokiness of the seeds pairs wonderfully with the tart dressing.

Quinoa Salad with Black Beans and Toasted Cumin Seeds
Makes 4 servings

2 cups cooked quinoa (use red to make it prettier)
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 cup finely diced plum tomatoes (about 4)
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (3 to 4 limes)
2 teaspoons light agave nectar
1 teaspoon grapeseed oil
1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup finely chopped scallions
Mixed greens for serving (optional)
  1. Place the quinoa in a large mixing bowl, if it isn't already cooling in one.
  2. Toast the cumin seeds. Preheat a pan over low heat. Place the seeds in the dry pan and toss often for about 5 minutes, or until they become dark and fragrant. Immediately transfer to a medium-size mixing bowl so they don't burn.
  3. Add the tomatoes, lime juice, agave, and grapeseed oil to the mixing bowl and mix well. When the quinoa has cooled, mix it in. Serve immediately or let sit for a bit for the flavors to meld. Serve over greens if preferred.