This is a creamier quinoa salad than if you would use olive oil as dressing, sweet and sharp with the classical combination of beets and goatcheese completed by the crunchy bites of the pumpkin seed.
Cooking larger batches of quinoa and storing it in the fridge (for up to 5 days if not mixed with a sauce) is really handy. Whenever you want to make a fresh salad or side dish you can just finish it off in no time. It is perfect for an ad hoc lunch, dinner or spontaneous picnics. This week I was really glad I had some in the fridge when we had to celebrate that, after weeks of gloomy autumn-weather, it was suddenly looking like summer again. Then you can’t just have dinner at a table, but you have to go outside! This quick creation was a delicious match to enjoy the last beams of sunlight on the plaid with a cold glass of fruity rosé.
Ingredients (serves 2):
- 100g quinoa
- bay leaves
- 100g soft goatcheese
- 100ml milk (goatmilk if available)
- 2-3 thyme springs
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated white pepper
- 2 cooked beets (cook for 40 minutes with skin and peel when cooled down)
- 2 generous handful of baby spinach
- 2 tablespoon of pumpkin seeds
Rinse the quinoa using a sieve (if the holes of the sieve are larger than the quinoa put a clean kitchen towel in it). Bring it to a boil in 150 ml water with the bay leaves, cover it and cook on low fire for 8 minutes. Let it cool for a few minutes and remove bay leaves.
In a separate pan roast the pumpkin seeds for 2 minutes, remove from pan and add milk and 2/3 of the goatcheese with pepper and thyme. Let it melt together and simmer for 3 minutes on low fire. Cut the beets into small cubes and tip into a bowl, add cooked quinoa and cheese dressing. Cut spinach coarsely and spread on the plates. Top it with quinoa mix and sprinkle with the pumpkin seeds and the rest of the cheese.
You can make this 1 day ahead put in waterproof pots, to have it ready for take-away lunch, but keep the pumpkin seeds separate in a dry container so that they stay crunchy.