by Buffy Ellen
What are you making for Xmas day? Team salad, or team dessert? If you’re on the former, I’ve got you covered. This salad is THE essence of summer - sweet pomegranate, fresh asparagus, creamy avo, crunchy hazelnuts, fluffy quinoa, all doused in possibly the world’s best balsamic vinaigrette.
Yes, this Summer Quinoa Salad is…
I had leftovers of this for lunch yesterday, and could I say it was even better on day 2? This is food and flavour in perfect harmony. But don’t take my word for it, try it for yourself. While pomegranate, asparagus, and avos are in season, how can you afford not to!
Let’s get making rainbows…
Come on over Quinoa
Quinoa (pronounced ‘keen-wah’) forms the base of this salad, and is truly an ancient grain going way back to the Inca civilisation. Back then, it was revered as the “mother of all grains”, and has in recent years become somewhat of a “super grain” in the Western world. It is one of the least allergenic foods, and can be substituted for almost any grain in any recipe. Rice, couscous, pasta, oats - you name it! Quinoa can hop in there for them all, to add a bit of variety and nutrient-spice to your diet.
If you're not quite sold on quinoa yet, here are a few reasons why you might like to include this fabulous food in your diet...
In specifics, the amount of cooked quinoa you'll get from this salad (½ c cooked per serve), provides a grand total of 111 calories, 4.1 grams of protein, 2.6g of fibre, 1.4 g of iron, as well as high levels of manganese, copper, phosphorous, magnesium, folate, and zinc. So an all round nutrient extravaganza!
I’ve used this delicious White Quinoa from Chantal Organics. It has a lovely light nutty flavour, and cooks up beautifully. When you’re sourcing quinoa, it’s really important to purchase one that’s certified organic and thus fairly traded. As I’ve mentioned on the blog before, products that are grown in developing countries, are likely to be purchased from farmers at very low prices, so that the sourcing companies can make maximum profit. Those countries generally do not have fair trade laws, minimum wages, or even working standards. Purchasing products that are certified organic, like Chantal Organics’ quinoa, inherently means that the farmers growing the product are being paid a fair wage. The organic certification (that you should be able to see on the back of the packet), can only be achieved if this is so.
Note also, that the rampant rise in quinoa’s popularity in the West, has meant that in many areas of South America, the price of quinoa is so high that the locals can no longer afford it themselves (it’s more lucrative to sell it abroad). So when you do purchase your quinoa, choose wisely (certified organic such as Chantal is best), and have it in moderation as part of varied diet.
Back to this salad. It’s amazing! All the flavours of summer, rolled into one. A few tips here, which I’ve detailed more in the notes below the recipe...
Tag me if you make this for your Christmas day lunch, or just over summer in general! On Instagram you can use @begoodorganics and #begoodorganics, or leave me a note on FB here. I would love to see your Christmas spread, with hopefully this divine Summer Quinoa Salad making an appearance in the midst!
Thanks for reading, and til next week – stay happy and well.
PS If you like this recipe, I’d love you to pin it on Pinterest, share it on Facebook, post your recreation on Instagram (tag me @begoodorganics and #begoodorganics), or share it with your family and friends. Also, if you're not already subscribed to my weekly recipe emails, be sure to do that here, and don't miss my next recipe video by signing up to my YouTube here. If you’re interested in one-on-one advice, I have a small number of Naturopathic and Nutrition consultations available each week, either in person or via Skype – you can find more information on those here.
Serves 4-6 as a side, or 2 as a light main
Want to make this recipe but missing an ingredient? Simply click on the ingredient link to go to our store and order it online. We deliver to NZ, Australia and internationally daily.
Always use certified organic, local and fairly traded ingredients wherever possible
Quinoa1/2 c quinoa1 c water1 1/2 tsp olive oilPinch sea saltAsparagus1 bunch asparagus (~2 c), trimmed1/2 tsp olive oilPinch sea saltSalad6 c lettuce (mixed - butter crunch/head, fancy, rocket)1/2 c micro greens2 radishes1/2 pomegranate 1/3 c activated hazelnuts1/2 avocadoBalsamic Dressing (makes 2 cups)1/3 c balsamic vinegar1/3 c apple cider vinegar1/3 c water2 tbsp stoneground mustard1 tbsp liquid sweetener (apple syrup works great here!)2 tsp sea salt1/2 shallot1 clove garlic1/2 c cold-pressed olive oil1/2 c cold-pressed chia seed oil1/4 c fresh herbs (e.g. basil, parsley, oregano, thyme)c = 250ml cup, tbsp = 15ml tablespoon, tsp = 5ml teaspoon
Buffy is the founder of Be Good Organics, and loves creating delicious yet simple plant-based whole foods recipes.
Buffy also oversees our Be Good Organics online store, full of plant based goodies that she personally uses and loves. Sign up for our newsletter below to be the first to receive her weekly recipes.
by Buffy Ellen
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I'm Buffy, a food obsessed nutrition nerd, former financial research analyst and investment banker, and now - full time blogger, nutritionist and soon to be naturopath. I live in Auckland, New Zealand with my partner Tony, our two cats Zeus and Luna, and our cute-as-pie little girl Mila. Can't wait to share some healthy recipes with you! READ MORE HERE...
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