Papaya & Quinoa Salad w/Spicy Honey dressing

Since the temperature has been getting higher in my area…I’ve been more in the mood to cool down with some salads.  I was shopping for fruit and found some papayas.  They are so colorful and beautiful and I was trying to think of a fun way to use them in my blog.  They have some fantastic health benefits.  They are rich in many vitamins and have more Vitamin C than lemons and oranges.

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They have a mildly sweet flavor, but they need the bite of the red wine vinegar, enhanced sweetness from the honey and a sprinkle of sea salt to bring all of the flavors together.  It’s colorful and the soft texture of the fruit goes well with the crunch of the yellow bell pepper.  The flavors went well together…but it needed extra sweetness.  I looked around in the cupboard and there it was..honey!  I combined honey with the spice of hot red pepper flakes and a little salt…and then…all of the flavors were as bright as the colors in the dish!

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Papaya and Quinoa Salad w/Spicy Honey Dressing

1/2 papaya (sliced lengthwise)

1/2 yellow bell pepper (chopped)

1/2 seedless cucumber (chopped)

1/4 cup cooked black beans

1/4 red onion (chopped)

1 clove garlic (minced)

1/4 cup pearl quinoa (cooked)

Spicy Honey Dressing

1 tbsp honey

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

2 tbsp red wine vinegar

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Boil water and add sea salt to it.  Once it is at a rolling boil, add the quinoa.  Cook for 15-20 minutes, until the little squiggles appear out of the grain.

Combine the ingredients for the spicy honey dressing and mix until the honey appears dissolved in the vinegar.  Set aside.

Gently mix the papaya, yellow bell pepper, cucumber, black beans, red onion, garlic and quinoa.  Be careful not to break the papaya!

Enjoy!!!

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