Quinoa and rice salad with mixed nuts and seeds

This salad is easily my absolute favorite quinoa based recipe! If you wish to prepare the salad ahead of time, simply boil the quinoa and the rice, combine them with the dressing and the chopped parsley and store it in the refrigerator. Add the nuts and the greens only before serving.

Ingredients (serves 4)
- 1/2 cup quinoa
- 1/2 cup long grain rice
- 1/2 cup almonds, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup cashews, coarsely chopped
- 1/3 cup pumpkin seeds, toasted
- 1/3 cup sunflower seeds, toasted
- 1 large onion, julienned
- a handful parsley, chopped
- mixed greens of your choice (arugula, baby spinach, baby romaine etc.)
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste

- 2 Tablespoons sesame seeds
- 1 garlic clove, mashed
- 3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste

1. Prepare the dressing by combining the ingredients listed above.
2. Boil the quinoa according to the instructions on the packaging, place it in a large bowl, fluff with fork and allow to cool.
3. Cover the rice with plenty of water, season with salt and pepper, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until 'al dente' (about 15 minutes, depending on the type of rice used). Drain rice and rinse with cold water then allow to drain completely. Add the rice to the quinoa together with the dressing and the  chopped parsley. Toss gently to combine, taste and adjust seasonings.
4. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil and sauté the onions until translucent and some of the thinner ones start to turn golden. Add in the almonds and cashews, season with salt and pepper and continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the nuts are lightly toasted.
5. Garnish the quinoa and rice salad with the nuts, seeds and mixed greens and serve immediately.
 If you wish to prepare this salad ahead of time, simply follow steps 1 to 4 and garnish the salad only before serving.


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