One who has lived in a 2nd story apartment, with no air conditioning, when it’s 100 degrees, will understand why turning on an oven seems…undesireable.  Though I burnt my poor baby herb garden this year, my coworker came to the rescue with a huge package of gorgeous thai basil and other treats for me last week.  So this weekend we threw together a cold salad.  But I had to take a moment to appreciate the lovely basil and it’s purple flowers.

As a philosophy I don’t tend to measure, so this is all extremely approximate.  Here’s our salad.  There will be many variations to come this summer.

1 cup dry quinoa
a bunch of thai basil, chopped
1 can of corn
1 can black beans (if you have time, fresh corn and home-cooked beans are tops)
1 cucumber
1 red bell pepper
a couple green onions
a couple of glugs of olive oil (go with your gut on this one)

Cook the quinoa while you  chop and combine everything else in a big bowl.  Let the quinoa cool for just a bit and then add it to the other ingredients.  Stir it up, salt and pepper, and you’re set.


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