I love grain based salads. If planned correctly they make for a wholesome meal and you don’t have to worry about side dishes or protein to go along with it. This Quinoa salad is one such recipe.
This recipe is also from ‘Vegan Eats World‘ cookbook like yesterday’s Avocado Mango Salad. This quinoa salad has all my favorite ingredients, dates, pistachios, baby spinach and of course quinoa. I love dates – they are so chewy, caramely and oh-so delicious. I always keep a bag of them in my pantry for snacking or for making desserts (like this burfi or these nut balls or this decadent cake) or salads like this one.
The list of ingredients seem long but most of them are readily available in a well stocked kitchen. Sumac powder is sprinkled on top of the salad to give slight lemony taste to the dish. You can find sumac in Middle Eastern stores or simply substitute with a bit of lemon juice.
3cupsSpinachBaby leaves (I used a mix of baby greens with kale, swiss chard and spinach), torn into bite size pieces
½cupFlat leaf parsley, chopped
1cupChickpeasCooked , drained and rinsed if using canned
1cupDatesPitted , chopped
1/3cupPistachios, toasted and coarsely chopped
4 ~ 6tbspsSumacpowder
For the Dressing:
2tbspsExtra Virgin Olive oil
To tasteSalt Pepper&
Cook Quinoa: Thoroughly rinse and drain quinoa and place it in a medium saucepan and toast it over medium heat for 3~4 minutes until grains are dry and lightly toasted. Add cumin and fennel seeds and toast for another minute.
Add water and salt. Bring the mixture to a boil, lower the heat, cover and cook for 20~22 minutes or until all of the water is evaporated and quinoa is tender. Fluff it with a fork and cool for 5 minutes.
Prepare Dressing: While quinoa is cooking, whisk all of the dressing ingredients in a 2cup liquid measuring cup and keep ready.
Prepare the Salad: Combine the onions, spinach (or mixed greens), parsley, chickpeas, dates and pistachios in a mixing bowl. Pour the prepared dressing and toss to coat completely and let stand while quinoa is cooking.
To Assemble: After the quinoa has cooled slightly, transfer it to the mixing bowl and toss it with the dressing and salad. Divide it among serving plates. Sprinkle with the sumac and serve warm or at room temperature.