Does any one else out there struggle with lunch? During the work week, which is essentially non-existent now, I gravitate towards simple reheating. Although not always the healthiest option, this has been a stellar way to power through leftovers.
This recipe is a break to the, sometimes soggy, leftover-lunch-pattern. Made in advance and left undressed (hehe) this salad will last throughout the work week. AND! is delicious topped with any of your leftover dinner proteins and veggies.
1 1/2 cups tricolor quinoa
1/2 bunch asparagus, cut into thirds
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 cup sugar snap peas, sliced thin
1/4 cup fresh mint, julienne
3-4 radishes, sliced thin (a Benriner is a great tool for this)
1/4 cup hazelnuts, toasted and chopped
1/4 cup shredded parmesan OPTIONAL but encouraged :)
1 cup micro greens or spring mix (Brookford Farms Micro Greens pictured here)
Preheat your oven to 400F.
Place quinoa in a small sauce pot and cover with about an inch of water. Cook over medium-high heat until the water comes to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cook until the water is evaporated and the small white tails of the quinoa have unfurled. Allow the quinoa to cool on a sheet pan.
Meanwhile, line a sheet pan with parchment (or better yet! a silpad). Toss the asparagus in olive oil, salt & pepper to taste. Roast in the oven until al-dente (to the tooth), about 8-10 minutes. Allow to cool.
Once the quinoa and asparagus are cooked and cooled, combine them with the snap peas, mint, radishes, and hazelnuts. The salad will store well for up to five days in an airtight container. When you're ready to enjoy the salad, toss the quinoa mix with some micro greens and/or Spring lettuces and Lemon Vinaigrette.
Basic Lemon Vinaigrette
Juice of 1 lemon, about 2 Tbsp
2 Tbsp dijon mustard
1/3 cup olive oil
2 tsp fresh cracked pepper
1 tsp honey
Salt to taste
Optional 2 Tbsp herbs, chopped fine (such as parsley, tarragon or mint)
Whisk to combine all ingredients. Stores well in an airtight container for several weeks.
~Make sure you drain and dry the quinoa really well! This will both prevent a soggy salad and lengthen its shelf life. I often use a piece of paper towel to line my Pyrex to soak up any moisture created over time: again, prolonging freshness!
~Always toast your nuts!! And be careful not to burn them... they burn fast, so keep a close eye on those suckers. Trust me - the stress is worth it!