Beyond Greens

Every once in a while, I share some of my favorite lunches. Sometimes, they are quick recipes that hit the spot. Other times, they are efficient and use ingredients I'm needing to get rid of or leftovers I've planned to incorporate. Still other times, they feed a craving I've had. But this time around, I'm sharing a recipe that is easy to make ahead, will feed me lunches for a week, and stars some of my favorite fresh flavors:

This hearty salad builds on a base of quinoa with crunchy celery (I used Wisconsin-grown stuff from CSA box, so it was an extra-special treat), radishes, and walnuts. Then it adds sweet grapes and spicy red onions, along with a sweet and tangy curried dressing. The result is a salad bursting with flavor. I like to line my bowl with spinach or arugula leaves and spoon in a generous helping. Suddenly, lunch feels like a special event!

This salad would also be equally at home alongside roasted chicken or pork as a dinner salad. And with Thanksgiving coming up later this month, it might be worth pointing out that it also pairs well with turkey and is a great make ahead dish. Now there's something to be thankful for!

Curried Quinoa Salad

  • 1 c. quinoa
  • 1 c. diced celery
  • ¾ c. halved seedless red grapes
  • ½ c. sliced radishes
  • ½ c. chopped walnuts
  • ¼ c. diced red onions
  • ¼ c. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 T. curry powder
  • 1 T. maple syrup
  • 1 tsp. grainy mustard
  • ½ tsp. granulated garlic
  • ½ tsp. salt

In a medium saucepan over high heat, add 2 cups of water and the quinoa; bring the mixture to a boil. Cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 13-15 minutes. When the quinoa is done, fluff it with a fork.

While the quinoa is cooking, prepare all the fruits and vegetables.

In a small resealable jar, add the vinegar, curry power, maple syrup, mustard, granulated garlic, and salt. Seal tightly and shake vigorously to combine.

In a large bowl, combine the cooked quinoa, celery, grapes, radishes, walnuts, and onions. Pour the dressing into the bowl; toss to evenly coat.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: 25 minutes

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