Sweet and Savory Quinoa and Papaya Salad

Have you introduced any new foods into your life recently?

Maybe you’ve given fennel a try?

What about coconut flour?

Or, maybe you gave kale a run for it’s money green(y)? [haha worst joke ever. I swear I’m actually funny in real life]

While I was studying to become a Holistic Nutritionist, I took it upon myself to buy something new at the supermarket each week and try to cook with it.

Although there were many flops along the way, I was introduced to amazing ingredients like millet, medjool dates, and even avocado – if you can believe it!

I can honestly say it’s been awhile since I’ve tried a new ingredient, so when I saw this salad recipe made from blended papaya seeds, I knew I had to give it a try.

Did you know that papaya (seeds and all) contain papain, an enzyme that helps digest proteins? It’s generally used in digestive enzymes along with bromelain, a similar enzyme found in pineapple.

But what I didn’t know was that you could eat the seeds, and that these little black gelatinous balls have some pretty amazing health benefits to boot!

  • Papaya seed extract may protect the kidneys from toxin-induced kidney failure.
  • The have some powerful antibacterial properties that may be effective against staph, e. coli, and salmonella infections.
  • May effectively eradicate intestinal parasites. I bet you could take these while on a candida diet, then donate the fresh papaya to a friend.
  • In Chinese medicine, it is believed that a teaspoon of papaya seeds will help detoxify the liver.

Sweet and Savory Quinoa and Papaya Salad

Vegan [option], Gluten free, Dairy free, Refined sugar free, Yeast free, Corn free

This salad is so light and summery, right down to the chopped kiwis. I love preparing these types of grain based salads and using them as a mix-in with my daily greens. Just combine 1 serving of salad with 2 cups of greens and you have one mean meal. No extra dressing needed!

Lightly adapted from: The Healthy Foodie

Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients

Quinoa

  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 cups filtered water

Salad

  • 1/2 papaya, peeled, seeded and diced [reserve the seeds]
  • 2 kiwis, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup raw pecans, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Dressing

  • 1/4 cup papaya seeds
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 teaspoon gluten-free Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon raw unpasteurized honey or agave nectar (vegan option)
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon rind
  • 1/4 teaspoon herbamare
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Directions

  1. Place quinoa and water in small saucepan and bring to boil.  Reduce heat, cover and simmer until all water is absorbed, about 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and keep covered while you work away at the rest of your salad. You can cook quinoa ahead of time if you’d rather use it cold.
  2. While quinoa is cooking, prepare and mix all the ingredients of the salad in a large mixing bowl.
  3. In a food processor or blender, purée all the dressing ingredients until smooth.
  4. Combine salad fixings with quinoa and pour dressing over top. Stir to combine.
  5. You can serve immediately or allow to chill in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours. Store the leftovers in an airtight container. Will keep in the fridge for 3 days.

In conclusion, this salad practically heals you for all that ails you.

;)

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