Friday, July 20, 2012

Quinoa Salad with Roasted Tomatoes

English, I'm afraid, is not something that happens after you eat this salad.

Foodie coma of happiness, yes. Just not the writing thing. Please excuse. Make this. Tastebud zingy whatnot blissful mm. You'll see.

1 lb small globe or cherry tomatoes, cut in half crosswise
Kosher salt
1 cup red and/or white quinoa, soaked for 10-20 minutes in cold water and drained well
4 oz baby arugula 
Handful purslane (optional—a good use for it if you've planted some to have on hand)
4 tbsp balsamic vinegar, simmered until volume is reduced by half
Freshly ground black pepper
10-20 fresh basil leaves, chiffonade

For cherry tomatoes: Preheat oven to 300°. Toss tomatoes gently in a bowl with a little olive oil and a pinch or two of salt. Pour onto a nonstick baking sheet, spread into a single layer, and turn face up. Roast for 30-35 minutes.

For small globe tomatoes:  Preheat oven to 325°. Turn tomatoes face up on a nonstick baking sheet, and drizzle with a little olive oil. Roast for 30 minutes, then sprinkle with salt and turn the oven down to 300°. Cook for another 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the quinoa with a little less than 1 1/4 cups of water in a pot. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to low and simmer for 15 minutes. If there is a little extra liquid at the bottom at the end, simply uncover the pan, turn the heat up to medium, and simmer for another minute or two until liquid evaporates. Turn off the heat and cover to keep warm.

Drizzle the greens lightly with olive oil, toss, and sprinkle with a pinch or two of salt. Add the quinoa and toss gently (the heat of the quinoa will wilt the greens very slightly). Serve onto plates. Top with roasted tomatoes (warm or room temperature), drizzle with balsamic reduction, and sprinkle with basil and black pepper.


Serves 2-4. Pair with a small plate of crackers and good cheese and a glass of your favorite wine for an absolutely mouthwatering picnic. And note that while the tomatoes take awhile to roast, this is a surprisingly easy meal to assemble.

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