I know we’re pretty late to the salad jar party but it wasn’t till the last couple of years that Phil would even contemplate eating salad. If ever it somehow found its way to his plate it would hastily get shoved onto mine with utter disgust. But now because we eat quite a bit of it, one thing I don’t want it to become is predictable and boring. Enter Hodmedod’s wonderful Organic Wholegrain Quinoa for these Roasted Cauliflower and Quinoa Salad jars. How to have salad that’s filling, full of texture and flavour and amenable to adding aallll kinds of yummy things to it!
I’ve used cauliflower here because not only is it super tasty and so easily taken up a notch with some simple (and health benefiting!) spices but it also packs a nutritional punch itself containing such key vitamins and minerals as vitamin B, vitamin C, potassium and folate.
Then you have protein packed quinoa for the base mixed with mild spring onions and aromatic fresh basil, lightened all the more with zesty lemon …
…all of which can then be loaded on top with whatever other flavours you love. I chose halved cherry tomatoes, diced red pepper, crumbled feta cheese, the roasted cauliflower and some roughly chopped pistachios. All this gives you a wonderfully light but filling salad with incredible textures and explosions of flavour!
If you’ve never cooked quinoa before you can find out all you need to know in this Back To Basics post.
Feel free to make it up as you go along, you know what you like ? But the Hodmedod’s Organic Wholegrain Quinoa base is just perfect and as you’ll most likely be making it the day before, it gives all the flavours time to infuse with each other .. it also doesn’t suffer from being more than a day old either so go ahead and make a couple of days worth!
I’d love to hear what your flavour combinations for something like this would be … the weirder and more wonderful the better! Let’s keep salad interesting 😎
Roasted Cauliflower & Quinoa Salad
Yield 2 jars
- 1 small cauliflower
- Drizzle of olive oil
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp dried Italian mixed herbs
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 cup Hodmedod's Organic Wholegrain Quinoa
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
- 4 spring onions - thinly sliced
- 1 tblsp fresh basil - shredded
- Handful cherry tomatoes - halved
- 1/2 red pepper - diced
- Small handful shelled pistachio nuts - very roughly chopped
- salt and pepper
- Heat the oven to 200 Fan / 220 C / 425 F / Gas 7 and line a medium roasting tray/dish with greaseproof paper or a silicon mat
- Cut the florets off the stalk of the cauliflower and break into small bite sized pieces. Put into a bowl then drizzle with a little olive oil and sprinkle in the garlic powder, dried mixed herbs, cumin, paprika, turmeric and some salt and pepper. Toss it all well together to coat the cauliflower.
- Tip onto the baking tray and roast for 15-20 minutes until the florets are golden and just cooked but not too soft. Set aside to cool.
- Cook the quinoa while the cauliflower is roasting - put the quinoa and vegetable stock in a small saucepan and simmer for 15-20 minutes till all the liquid has been absorbed. Stir occasionally.
- See this guide if you're not cooked quinoa before.
- Leave that to cool too once cooked then stir in the grated lemon zest, shredded basil and sliced spring onions. Check seasoning.
- You can then start layering your jars - I started with a few spoons of quinoa followed by some halved cherry tomatoes, then the roasted cauliflower, some crumbled feta cheese, chopped pistachios and finally some diced red pepper
- Layer it all up then pop in the fridge ready to grab and go the next day 🙂
- If you're not familiar with cooking quinoa, you can find a detailed Back to Basics guide here.
- Cook the quinoa at the same time as you're cooking the cauliflower - they take roughly the same amount of time and can be cooking and then cooling together!