As our relations thaw, we'll probably see more Cuban food in places around you. And that's a very, very good thing; their cuisine is delicious. This quinoa bowl may not exactly be straight outta Havana, but it brings the flavors and spirit right into your kitchen. Quinoa and beans are topped with juicy tomatoes and rich avocado, flavored with a zesty lime and cilantro dressing. It all comes together for a meal you'll be glad you didn't embargo.
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You Will Need
Medium Non-Stick Pan
Before You Cook
Cook the Quinoa
Bring a small pot with quinoa, 1½ cups water, vegetable base, ¼ tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper to a boil over high heat.
Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook until tender, 14-16 minutes.
Remove from burner. Set aside covered.
While quinoa cooks, prepare ingredients.
Prepare the Ingredients
Zest and halve lime. Quarter one half and juice remaining half.
Mince cilantro (no need to stem).
Peel and halve shallot. Cut into ¼" dice.
Drain black beans.
Core tomato and cut into ¼" dice.
Halve avocado and remove pit by carefully tapping pit with the blade of your knife so it sticks. Gently twist knife to release pit. Scoop out the flesh with a spoon. Cut into ¼" slice.
Make the Cilantro Vinaigrette
In a mixing bowl, combine 2 Tbsp. lime juice, 1 Tbsp. olive oil, cilantro, 1 tsp. lime zest, half the garlic (reserve remaining for black beans), ¼ tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper. Set aside.
Meat lovers! If using protein, cook, transfer to a plate, and tent with foil to keep warm. Wipe pan clean before making beans. If using chicken, pat dry and cut into 1" dice on a separate cutting board. Season all over with ¼ tsp. salt and a pinch of pepper. Stir occasionally with 2 tsp. olive oil in a medium non-stick pan over medium-high heat until chicken reaches a minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees, 5-7 minutes. If using shrimp, pat dry. Cook with 1 tsp. olive oil in a medium non-stick pan over medium-high heat until shrimp reaches a minimum internal temperature of 145 degrees, 2-3 minutes per side. If using steak strips, separate into a single layer and pat dry. Season all over with a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir occasionally with 1 tsp. olive oil in a medium non-stick pan over medium-high heat until no pink remains, 4-6 minutes.
Cook the Black Beans
Place a medium non-stick pan over medium heat. Add 1 Tbsp. olive oil and shallot to hot pan. Stir often until softened, 1-2 minutes.
Add remaining garlic and stir until fragrant, 30-60 seconds.
Add black beans, ¼ cup water, and taco seasoning and bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer, cover, and cook until heated through, 5 minutes.
Season with a pinch of salt. Remove from burner.
Finish the Dish
Plate dish as pictured on front of card, placing quinoa in a bowl and topping with black beans, avocado, and tomatoes.
If using protein, place on top of quinoa.
Drizzle vinaigrette over top and squeeze lime quarters over to taste. Bon appétit!
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