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Friday, October 9, 2009

Quinoa Salad with Figs, Pomegranates, Spinach and Chicken

Quinoa Fig and Pomegranate Salad

A few weeks ago on Twitter, Diana professed her love for quinoa (#quinoaqlub). It got me thinking about how much I love quinoa (see here, here, here, here, here...you get the picture), but it's been approximately six months since I have cooked with it. I knew I had to change that especially when I saw all the awesome sounding quinoa dishes people were coming up with. As I mentioned the other day, I split a basket of figs with Mary. Some went in to that amazing tart and the rest went in to this salad. To make the salad a bit heartier, I added some cubes of cooked chicken and to make it prettier (and healthier) I added chopped spinach and pomegranate seeds. It was the perfect bridge of late summer into fall, at least when it comes to food. I didn't want the dressing to overwhelm the fruit flavors so I only added a couple of splashes of balsamic and a small drizzle of oil. My only problem was that I overcooked the quinoa a bit because it my first time using my mini stove and I wasn't sure about the controls. Regardless, this salad came together quickly and easily and it was a wonderfully satisfying lunch.

Quinoa Fig and Pomegranate Salad (eh)



Quinoa Salad with Figs, Pomegranates, Spinach and Chicken
(By Esi)

Makes 2 servings

1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
4-5 chicken tenders, cut into chunks
1-2 handfuls figs, sliced
1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
2 handfuls baby spinach, roughly chopped
Balsamic vinegar to taste
Extra-virgin olive oil to taste
Salt and pepper

Lightly season this chicken with salt and pepper and cook in a bit of olive oil in a medium skillet until cooked through. Set aside to cool slightly. In a medium saucepan, bring the quinoa to a boil with 1 cup of water. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook 12-15 minutes until the water is absorbed.

In a medium bowl, combine the quinoa, chicken, figs and spinach. Season lightly with balsamic vinegar, a bit more oil if desired and salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm, topped with pomegranate seeds.

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24 comments:

Ben said...

That's a gorgeous salad! I need to cook more with quinoa, too. Thanks for the ideas :)

The Food Librarian said...

Delicious! I just finished the last of my figs last night. Sad.

Sharon said...

What a lovely way to use quinoa!

TKTC said...

What a STUNNER! I love all the colors and textures here. I also would like to become a member of the #quinoaclub.

Kim (Edible/Usable) said...

And here I thought I was done with salads since it's fall, but this one looks really good. Time to get some figs...

The Active Foodie said...

What a great combination! This is definitely going on the to do list!

Mary said...

I love this combination of ingredients and it's gorgeous to look at. This is a great way to use quinoa.

Erica said...

Quinoa is awesome- such a fun nutty flavor. The figs totally look like they make this dish. Just pretty. Hope you have a nice weekend

Heather said...

ohhh. fig and pomegranate! how decadent!

Jenn said...

I think the quinoa fever is rubbing off on you. Though, I still need to try it myself. LOL. Looks really good.

Diana said...

The Quinoa Queen approves this message. Err recipe.

Nice work!

6 months without quinoa?!?! I'm appalled!!

Esi said...

Thanks everyone!

Diana - don't you think this is a great return to quinoa? lol

Marian said...

What a scrumptious looking and souding salad! Thanks for the inspiration!

angela@spinachtiger said...

This is beautiful. I just recently posted a "toasted" quinoa, which you may like. I love the figs in this.

Kerstin said...

Mmm, what a delicious and healthy quinoa salad! I love all the goodness you packed in :)

Cinnamon-Girl Reeni♥ said...

This is a lovely combo of flavors - love the figs in it! I'm having a hard time finding fresh ones here.

The Cooking Photographer said...

Um, WOW! This is beautiful Esi and so healthy!

unconfidential cook said...

What a perfect salad! I love everything in there...and, together I bet this is an amazing combo! Plus, it's gorgeous!

Helene said...

I love playing with quinoa. This is a beautiful salad.

Cate said...

I'm always excited to find new ways to use quinoa and this is beautiful with all those colors!

canopenergirl said...

this looks amazing.I can't wait to try it out. Any suggestions for what to replace the chicken with for the veg/pescatarians?

Shannon said...

LOVE this salad, so many delicious ingredients :)

doggybloggy said...

what a beautiful dish and a dynamic combination!

Olga said...

ooh what a creative combo! Love the addition of fruits.