I am a salad junkie, but not the usual lettuce, cucumber and tomato salad. I always like to mix up my salads with interesting combinations of flavors, textures and colors. This salad is another attempt to do so. Not only is it an interesting combination, but the components themselves are all healthy and bring with them a ton of nutrition.
This salad works as a side or as an entree sized one. It can also be a great make-ahead salad or prepared and consumed fresh. I am a big fan of cruciferous vegetables like Broccoli. I particularly enjoy them in a roasted fashion. So, I always have bag of frozen ones in my freezer (although I have used fresh florets here). The combination is great because of the earthy, nutty flavors of the Quinoa together with the charred flavor of the roasted Broccoli and the crispiness of the toasted Almonds. The salad makes for a balanced meal with protein from the Quinoa, vitamins and minerals from the Broccoli and additional nutrients from the Almond.
You are welcome to add additional components to this salad, especially in terms of dressings. but the day I prepared this, I had some leftover store-bought Basil Pesto on hand and it worked great.
|Prep time||10 minutes|
|Cook time||35 minutes|
- Quinoa – 1 cup, washed and drained
- Broccoli – 2 medium heads cut into florets (Approx. 4-6 cups)
- Carrot – 1 fresh, shredded
Spices, Herbs & Dressings
- Salt – As per taste
- Garlic – 2 tsp or 2 cloves, crushed
- Red Chili Flakes – 1 tbsp (Adjust as per your taste)
- Basil Pesto – 2 tbsp (Store bought or homemade)
- Olive Oil – 2 tbsp
- Almonds – A handful, slivered
- Line a baking tray with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 375F (190C)
- Place the broccoli florets in a bowl. To this, add olive oil, garlic, red chilli flakes and salt. Mix well to evenly coat all the florets
- Place the florets on the baking tray in a single layer for even roasting
- Roast the broccoli at 375F for approx. 30 minutes
- In the meanwhile, cook the quinoa by adding 1.5 cups water to the 1 cup of washed and drained quinoa. Bring the mixture to a boil. Then reduce the heat to medium and cook until the quinoa has absorbed all the water. Take it off the heat, cover a lid and let it rest for 5 minutes. Then, fluff it with a fork and add it a mixing bowl
- To the mixing bowl with quinoa, add the roasted broccoli, shredded carrots and basil pesto. Mix well to coat all components with the pesto
- Add slivered almonds and mix
- The salad can be served warm or can be chilled and enjoyed too
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