Healthy Eating: Perfect for your Easter or Passover table — Quinoa Salad

Quinoa salad
Quinoa salad

Passover and Easter are approaching and it is a time for family gatherings … which can mean a lot of overeating and rich foods. Here’s an easy, nutritious and healthy recipe for your holiday table. Feel free to substitute another grain as well as add additional vegetables. This recipe is a keeper that you can adapt to use what is in your pantry. Blessings of the season!

Sweet and Crunchy Quinoa Salad

Serves 8
1 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes, all around the same size
3 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1/3 cup pine nuts
4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup dried cranberries
4 scallions, sliced

Preheat oven to 400º F.

Place the quinoa into a small saucepan and add 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 15 minutes, or until the water is evaporated. Turn off the heat and let quinoa sit covered for at least one hour.

Place the sweet potato cubes into a roasting pan and toss with 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil. Bake for 25 minutes, or until you can just pierce the cubes with a fork. Set aside.

Place the pine nuts into a small pan over medium heat until lightly toasted, stirring often. Set aside.

In a small bowl, place the remaining three tablespoons olive oil, vinegar, honey salt, pepper, cumin and cinnamon. Whisk well.

When the quinoa is dry, use a whisk to break apart the seeds and place into a large bowl. Add half the vinaigrette and mix with the whisk. Add more to taste, depending on how wet you like your quinoa

Add the sweet potatoes, pine nuts, cranberries and scallions and mix gently.

Serve at room temperature.

Deborah Binder Formal Portrait– By Deborah Binder

Deborah Binder lives in south Snohomish County with her family. She is “dancing with N.E.D.” (no evidence of disease) after being diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer in 2009. She is a foodie who loves to cook from scratch and share here experiments with her family. She attended culinary school on the East Coast and currently chef assists at PCC Cooks and NuCulinary Cooking School. Her current interest in food is learning to eat for health and wellness, while at the same time enjoying the pleasures of the table. As Julia Child once said, “Everything in moderation including butter.” Deborah can be contacted at jaideborah@yahoo.com.

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