This hearty salad could be a meal on its own. I’ve posted a quinoa salad before, but this one takes the cake.
I used a recipe from the Vegan Planet and switched it up a little bit.
Here’s what you’ll need:
An 11 oz (300g) box or handful of mixed greens
One cup cooked, cooled quinoa
1 cucumber, chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans or walnuts
2 pears, sliced
Handful of dried cranberries
Dressing (taken directly from the recipe):
1/3 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1. Mix dressing ingredients together in a bowl. Set aside.
2. In a separate bowl combine greens, cucumber, pear, nuts and dried cranberries. Mix in half of the dressing and stir well.
3. Mix the other half of the dressing in with the cooked, cooled quinoa. (For instructions, see this previous post).
4. Add quinoa to bowl and mix into salad.
5. Dish into four bowls.
Here is the second part of yesterday’s blog post — the Baby Spinach with Avocado, Pomegranate and Sunflower Seeds salad. This recipe wasn’t taken from the Moosewood. I took it from Jillian Michaels’ Master Your Metabolism Cookbook. (Michaels was one of the personal coaches featured on the Biggest Loser back in the day and is apparently coming back in January 2013 for all you fans).
This is a great time to cook with pomegranates because they’re currently in season until about January. You can buy the juice all year but not the fruit. And the seeds are juicy and crunchy and a great addition to salads.
Read more here about the health benefits of this fruits but to shorten it for you here is the summary — “a glass of pomegranate juice has more antioxidants than red wine, green tea, blueberries, and cranberries.”
This recipe asks for spinach and I find a plain spinach salad can be a little slimy tasting so I purchased a mixed greens and herb package from Planet Organic. It had some dill in it, which added a great flavour.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
- 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
- 1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 large shallot, quartered
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 pomegranate
- 10 oz baby spinach leaves
- 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds toasted (something I never do, I just toss them in)
- 1 avocado
1. Throw the orange zest and juice, lime zest and juice, shallot, olive oil, chili powder, salt and pepper into a blender. Mix until smooth and set aside.
2. Fill a large bowl with cold water. Cut the pom in half. Holding on half under the water and remove the seeds with your hands. Drain the seeds well, discarding the membrane. Set aside 3/4 cup. Use the rest another time. (I don’t always need the bowl of water but I do find it helps with rubbing off the membrane).
3. Combine the greens and all but 2 tablespoons of the pom seeds, the sunflower seeds, and about 1/4 cup of the dressing. Toss gently to coat. Dish salad out onto plates (To roast the seeds: place on baking sheet and cook for 2 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven).
4. Pitt, peel and slice the avocado thinly before arranging on top of the salad. Spinkle the rest of the seeds on top with remaining sauce.