Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Quinoa and Kale Salad with Apples & Sweet Potatoes

Been overloading on all the goodies available this time of year??  This salad is a nice break from the heavier foods we like to indulge on during the holidays and makes a great meal all on it's own.  Best part is, it's a breeze to put together.  I made it as a vegetarian dish for Thanksgiving and also for dinner for a friend.  Both times it was a hit.  I came across the recipe in the November issue of Food & Wine and only made one small change.  Instead of using raw red onion, as I really don't like to eat any type of onion raw, I caramelized it and thought that step added a fantastic depth of flavor.  I also used a good apple cider vinegar which made for a really nice dressing.  Hope you enjoy!  Then maybe a few more treats will taste even sweeter : ).

Quinoa and Kale Salad with Apples and Sweet Potatoes
Food & Wine November 2012

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups quinoa
Pinch Salt
1 1/2 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled & cut into 3/4" dice
Fresh ground pepper
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 large Granny Smith apples, cut into 1/2" dice
1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/2 medium red onion thinly sliced
4 packed cups baby kale
4 packed cups arugula

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°. In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the quinoa and toast over moderate heat, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add 3 cups of water, season with salt and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer the quinoa for 16 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand for 10 minutes. Fluff the quinoa, spread it out on a baking sheet and refrigerate until it is chilled, about 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, on a baking sheet, toss the sweet potatoes with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for about 25 minutes, stirring once, until golden and softened. Let cool.
  3. On a separate baking sheet spread the sliced red onion and drizzle with a little olive oil.  Place in the oven until just caramelized and translucent.  This can also be done over a very low flame in a saute pan.(Skip this step entirely if you prefer the taste of raw onion.)
  4. In a large bowl, whisk the remaining 6 tablespoons of olive oil with the vinegar; season with salt and pepper. Add the quinoa, sweet potatoes, apples, parsley, onion and greens and toss well. Serve right away.
MAKE AHEAD The quinoa and sweet potatoes can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.


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