QUINOA BEET SALAD WITH GINGER LIME DRESSING
I always associate food with places where I have been in my life, both physical locations and emotional states. Different food experiences stick with me longer than other memories, and by focusing on what I ate, other experiences that I might easily have forgotten are recovered. When I eat something I love, it makes its own little spot in my memories, untouched by the haze of time. Quinoa beet salad in Hawaii can be added to this list. Most mornings, while we were there, we would go to a health food bar to load up for the busy day ahead of us. I always went for fruit and some sort of sweetie (vegan apple turnover, the best!), while my partner Adam would always get the quinoa beet salad, no fail. So when we got home I spent a bit of time recreating this tasty salad, until we were happy with the results.
What makes this salad great is its versatility. It is great to be made up ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator to be taken for lunch, or just to have on hand. It works as a great base to add left over roasted veggies too, or whatever you happen to have.
SERVES: 4 ppl as Entree or Side Dish
PREP TIME: 10 Minutes
COOKING TIME: 15 -20 Minutes
DIETARY CONSIDERATION: Raw, Vegan, Vegetarian, Paleo, Sugar Free, Dairy Free, Soy Free, Gluten Free
2 cups Quinoa (uncooked)
4 Medium Beet (grated)
½ cup Green or Red Onion (chopped)
1 cup Bell Pepper (diced)
1/4 cup Pumpkin Seeds
½ cup Fresh Parsley (chopped)
1/2 tsp Sea Salt
1/2 tsp Black Pepper
Optional add ins: Fresh Diced Tomato, Roasted Cubbed Yam, Goat Cheese/Feta, Avocado, Walnuts.
Ginger Lime Dressing
1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
1 Clove Garlic (Chopped)
3-4 cm Ginger (Grated)
1/4 Cup Cilantro
1 tbsp Liquid Sweetener (Maple Syrup, Honey, or Agave)
2 tbsp Lime Juice
2 tbsp Rice Wine or Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tbsp Chopped Fresh Mint
3/4 cup Oil
Vitamix or Blender of Choice
Salad: Using a mesh sieve, rinse quinoa under cold water and combine it in a pot with 4 cups fresh water. Cover with a lid and bring it to a boil. Once boiling, turn down the quinoa to simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is soft. Once cooked, pour the quinoa onto a baking tray, spreading it evenly to to make a thin layer. This way it will cool faster and not get to mushy in the pot. Salt and pepper it to taste, and mix in the grated beetroot. You may have to give the quinoa/beet mixture a bit of a squeeze in your palms to extract the lovely beet colour. Once the quinoa is cooled, you can go about adding the chopped onion, pumpkin seeds, bell pepper, and parsley.
I like to serve the salad on a bed of spinach and top it with extra pumpkin seeds, avocado, and the optional goat feta. Dress individual salads with the Ginger Lime dressing just before serving.
Ginger Lime Dressing: Combine all the ingredients except the oil in a food processor or blender, and purée. Slowly pour the oil until the mixture has emulsified. Season with sea salt and pepper.