Persian Inspired Quinoa Salad
1 cup quinoa
4 Thai eggplants, diced
1 bell pepper, diced
1 large tomato, diced
3 carrots, shredded
1 medium beet, shredded
1/3 cup tart dried cherries, chopped
3 tablespoons roasted sesame tahini
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 large clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup mint
1/2 cup flat leaf parsley
unbleached sea salt
fresh gound pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 1/2 cups water
1. Rinse the quinoa and then toast lightly in 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add water and cook until done, but not mushy. Set aside.
2. Generously salt the eggplant and set aside. Try to get a consistent size on everything that you are chopping. Drain, rinse and dry the eggplant after about 10 minutes.
3. Heat about 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet. Add the eggplant and let cook for 2 minutes before adding the bell pepper, tomato and cherries. Cook together for about 5 minutes. Everything should stay pretty al dente, but you want the flavors to marry.
4. In a small food processor, make an emulsion with the tahini and lemon (it will turn into a mayonnaise-y consistency) and then add the garlic.
5. When the veggies are done, dump them in a big bowl with the cooked quinoa, shredded beets and carrots, and tahini dressing. Stir to combine and add salt and pepper to taste. When the salad has cooled stir in the green herbs and serve.
Source of recipe: A delicious quinoa salad inspired by cleaning out the fridge.