Quick and simple this morning since I’ve got a fussing baby, a dog to get to daycare, and a Mommy & Me fitness class to get to (it’s still weird that this is my life now. Not complaining! Just weird.)
The other weekend, while I was visiting paradise (Pender Island), my dad made me this salad. Apparently it’s one he’s been telling me to try for ages but, hearing ‘salad,’ I just kind of glazed over it. No doubt, salads can be wickedly delicious, but I usually don’t have as much fire under my butt to try them as, say, a really good pasta recipe (hence the fitness class…).
WELL. I stand corrected. Not only was this salad just as spectacular as he always raved, but it’s also a) ultra healthy and b) ultra filling. Not like, ‘uggggh I feel so gross’ filling- more like ‘wow, that will nourish me all day with it’s magical healing salad powers.’
I don’t know if any of you have ever been to a really excellent vegetarian/vegan restaurant and felt this way before. It’s a combination of feeling really, really satisfied and also a little smug at how healthy you’re being. It’s as if you can feel the nutrients just flowing through your system (sort of like drinking coconut water or pho while hungover), but in a rather sanctimonious way.
You temporarily vow to only eat healthy from now on, and never set eyes on a burger oozing with melted cheese again. (Obviously, you DO later eat said burger, but only after you’ve ridden this halo for a good while.)
The best part of this salad may be that you can play with all the ingredients. Have some broccoli lying around the fridge? Add it in! Proteins? I love this with grilled flank steak, bbq prawns, succulent roast chicken breast, you name it. The other week I had some leftover Caramelized Spiced Cauliflower lying around and added it in. HEAVENLY.
Don’t miss out on the dressing. It’s light, flavourful, and wickedly delicious.
Have fun, eat well, feel good. Happy Friday!
|Middle Eastern Super Salad|| |
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa*
- 1 cup cooked chickpeas (~ 1 400ml tin, drained and rinsed)
- 1 bunch fresh spinach
- 1 punnet fresh grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
- ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 avocado, sliced or cubed
- ¼ cup shelled pistachios
- 2 Tbsp fresh mint leaves
- ¼ cup feta cheese, crumbled
- Grilled protein (fish, chicken, shrimp, tofu, etc.)* OPTIONAL
- ⅓ cup plain yogurt
- 2 Tbsp orange juice
- 1 Tbsp fresh mint, chopped
- 1 tsp honey
- ¼ tsp ground cumin
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Rinse quinoa. Add to a saucepan with 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer until quinoa is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove lid, fluff quinoa and then drain any remaining liquid. Spread quinoa out on a large platter or divide evenly among 4 bowls.
- Spread chickpeas over top the quinoa layer, followed by the spinach leaves. Sprinkle with halved tomatoes, red onion slices, avocado, pistachios, mint leaves, and feta cheese.
- Mix all dressing ingredients together in a small bowl. Pour dressing over salad and top with protein if you so choose.