I've not met anyone who doesn't love this dish. It's gourmet, it's different, it's the kind of dish that takes a few minutes to prepare. I've gotten to the point that I make this dish sans apricots and sans peppers. Like it best without. That's what cooking is all about -- making dishes the way you like them!

Quinoa, an ancient grain rediscovered, is a complete protein. It also sprouts as it cooks. Because the Indians believed quinoa gave them superhuman powers, Cortez made having it or eating it punishable by death.

2 cups water 1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup quinoa 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 cup toasted pine nuts 2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup dried apricots, chopped coarsely
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice I bunch scallions, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon paprika 1 red bell pepper finely diced,
or 3 tablespoons dried sweet bell peppers

In a medium saucepan, bring water to a boil. Stir in quinoa, cover pot, and simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off flame and let quinoa remain in the covered pot for another 10 minutes so grain will absorb water.

Transfer quinoa to a salad bowl and fluff slightly with a fork every few minutes until grain cools.

Toast pine nuts in a dry skillet over moderate heat, stirring until nuts are golden brown, about 3 minutes. Set aside.

When the quinoa is cool, add remaining ingredients and toss until grain is coated. Serve and enjoy.