My Chef's Hat - Bacon Quinoa Salad with Garlic Honey Lime Dressing

A few months ago I tried quinoa for the first time in my recipe for blackened chicken with cliantro lime quinoa, and I really kinda liked it.  I kept saying that I would eat it more, but I really never did...until about a week ago when I was determined to incorporate it into my menu rotation.  So my new goal is to eat it at least twice a week.  It's one of those "super" foods, and very good for you.  And since I'm running a lot more lately, I need more healthy carbs.

The last time I made it, I cooked it in water; and when I tasted the plain quinoa it was extremely bland and boring.  And I immediately understood why some people hate it.  The cilantro and lime made a huge difference, and that's what kept it in the back of my mind.  So I've been finding recipes on pinterest, and came across bacon quinoa salad with garlic honey lime dressing.  Honestly, it was the bacon that drew me in first.  And I love honey, garlic and lime, so I knew I couldn't go wrong. 

Here is the official recipe picture:

And here is my version:

This dish is really delicious!  Yes, I realize that the bacon isn't the healthiest thing, but I only used one piece so I didn't feel quite so bad.  I cooked the quinoa in vegetable broth, and it makes a huge difference from cooking in water.  It adds a lot of flavor on its own, and maybe next time I'll cook it in a combo of veggie broth and water.  The dressing is really good.  Although it calls for raw garlic, I made the dressing well ahead of the quinoa, so it had a chance to sit and mix with the oil and honey and that mellowed the flavor a bit.  I didn't have sesame seeds so I just toasted some pine nuts.  And I completely forgot to add the sesame seeds. 

Will I make this again?  Definitely!  And I've already found a bunch more recipes that use quinoa and I'm excited to try them all.

Recipe found on The Midnight Baker