Friday, April 15, 2011

Test: Quinoa, Chickpea, and Spinach Salad with Paprika Vinaigrette

As I've mentioned before, I have a whole slew of recipes saved up in a Google document that I've been waiting to test out.  Two weekends ago (pre-new camera), we were looking for an easy, healthy dinner salad option and I remembered that I had a few quinoa options saved.  This quinoa, chickpea, and spinach salad from Serious Eats was filling enough to eat as a main for dinner and it was delicious.   The recipe makes a lot of salad, so it's perfect to take to a potluck, summer BBQ, or to pack for a few lunches.

Quinoa, Chickpea, and Spinach Salad with Paprika Vinaigrette
From Bon Appetit via Serious Eats

1 1/2 cups quinoa (about 10 ounces), rinsed and drained
4 cups baby spinach leaves
2 (16-ounce) cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 3/4 cups cucumbers, chopped into 1/3-inch cubes
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup fresh mint leaves
1 1/2 cups crumbled feta (about 7 ounces)
1/4 cup Sherry wine vinegar
2 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1/2 cup olive oil
salt and black pepper

Pour the quinoa into a large pot. Top with enough water to cover by an inch, and season with a big pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 15 minutes. Carefully drain quinoa. Spread out on large baking sheet and let cool for a few minutes.

Combine the spinach leaves, chickpeas, cucumber, tomatoes, mint, and half of the feta in a large bowl. Add the cooled quinoa and toss well.

Whisk together the vinegar and smoked paprika in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well. Serve with some more crumbled feta on top. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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