Wednesday, January 23

Root Vegetable Quinoa Salad

So my cleanse is over (as you might have guessed from this post), but there are still lots of recipes I made during that time that are worth mentioning.  I’m a big fan of quinoa, but this salad has the right balance of being veggie-heavy with just enough grains to bring it into main-course territory. The beets, radishes, fennel, and shallots all get super caramelized which brings out their natural sugars and adds a nice charred flavor. It’s hard to tell which vegetable you’re eating since they all look alike after cooking, but the surprises keeps the salad interesting. I served it warm, but cold leftovers make a great lunch – and if you want to add a little crumbled feta on top (my greatest craving during the cleanse), I think it would taste even better.

Root Vegetable Quinoa Salad:
  • Scrub and trim 2 bunches of small beets* and 1 large bunch of radishes.
  • Quarter or halve the beets and radishes into bite-size pieces and thinly slice 1 large bulb of fennel.
  • Peel and trim 3 shallots and toss all the vegetables with 2 tbsp. olive oil.
  • Season veggies with salt and pepper and arrange in a single layer on two baking sheets.
  • Place the baking sheets in a 450F oven for 25-40 minutes, turning once or twice, until caramelized and tender.**
  • Meanwhile, rinse 1/2 c. quinoa and place in a pot of cold water. Season with salt.
  • Bring quinoa to a boil, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes, or until al dente.
  • Drain quinoa and place in a large serving bowl. Add the roasted vegetables on top.
  • Whisk together the juice of 1 Meyer lemon and 3 tbsp. olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  • Pour dressing over the salad and sprinkle with 2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley.
  • Drizzle with a little balsamic vinegar (optional) and serve.

Serves four
*The beets may need to be peeled in some places to remove any really dirty areas. I like two use two different colors of beets.
**I find that the fennel and shallots caramelize faster than the beets and radishes. You might want to keep those on a separate baking sheet and remove from the oven earlier.