My apologies for the time between posts. It’s amazing how time slips away, isn’t it? Last week was one of my busiest weeks at work yet, and we didn’t stop moving over the weekend. Finally though, thanks to a midday snow storm, I’m able to sit and chat with you all. I’m so excited to catch back up!
I’m going to get right to the point this time. You’ll want to make this red quinoa salad. No, wait. You need to make this red quinoa salad.
This salad – a roasted vegetable and red quinoa salad, to be exact – is everything good about winter foods. You can certainly make it any time of year and it is in fact served cold, but it’s so hearty that it screams comfort. And roasted vegetables? You might as well top them with heaps of snow because all I taste is winter when I eat them.
Adapted from Food and Wine, this red quinoa salad will delight the palate and fill the belly.
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp coriander
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
- 1/4 tsp cayenne
- 2 large carrots, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
- 1/2 lb brussels sprouts, quartered
- 4 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 3/4 cup uncooked red quinoa, rinsed
- 1/2 head red cabbage, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup Pomegranate seeds
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped walnuts
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 400°.
- In a small bowl, combine the paprika, cumin, coriander, salt, pepper, and, cayenne. Set aside. In a medium bowl, toss the carrots and Brussels sprouts with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add half the spice mixture and toss to coat. Spread the vegetables on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast for about 25 minutes, tossing once or twice, until vegetables are tender.
- In a medium saucepan, combine the rinsed quinoa with the other half of the spice mix plus 1.5 cups water and bring to a boil. Cover then simmer over low heat until water is absorbed and quinoa is tender, about 15 minutes (if there's still water, continue to simmer for up to 5 minutes longer). Uncover, fluff with a fork and let cool (quinoa will cool faster if spread out on a plate).
- In a large bowl, whisk 2 tablespoons of olive oil with 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and a teaspoon of Dijon mustard. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the quinoa, roasted vegetables, pomegranate seeds, and walnuts and toss to coat. Spread the sliced cabbage on a platter, and top with quinoa mixture, then serve.
The difference between red quinoa and white quinoa? Red quinoa is prettier (obviously of the utmost importance), and tends to hold up a bit better (i.e. less mush), making it ideal for cold salads (see this Whole Grain Council comparison).
My one piece of advice with this salad is to spice it up. Don’t skimp on the spices and add any your heart desires. You can even change up the roasted vegetables if you want. No cabbage? Use greens! No red quinoa? White will do in a pinch. Lots of carrots but not sprouts? Stick with the orange!
Honestly, isn’t that the best part of cooking though, making dishes like this red quinoa salad into something of your own? Something you love to eat and look forward to all morning long? Something that has nothing leftover because you ate it all on the first go-round?
This salad does all that. Make it your own and report back. I want to hear your red quinoa salad adventures.