We are doing a class this week at Cancer Wellness on clean eating—coming back to the whole food, as unprocessed as possible and really enjoying the flavors of your recipe. I love the salad Chef Nancy is going to do in class. It is filled with superfoods that I get excited about!
The first food in this salad that I love to talk about is Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) in it. This seed is light, fluffy, slightly crunchy and subtly flavored. It actually cooks and tastes like a grain, making it an excellent replacement for grains that are hard for someone to digest. It is a complete protein (containing all 9 essential amino acids that are required by the body as building blocks for muscles). Compared to other grains, quinoa is higher in calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, iron, copper, manganese, and zinc than wheat, barley, and corn.
The other food is fennel. It has a unique combination of phytonutrients, Vitamin C, fiber, and folate. It belongs to the Umbellifereae family and is therefore closely related to parsley, carrots, dill and coriander. The Vitamin C found in fennel bulb is directly antimicrobial and is also needed for the proper function of the immune system. Enjoy the salad on this great spring day in Atlanta!
Double Apple Almond Quinoa Salad
4 Cups Arugula, Watercress or Spring Greens
1 ½ Cups Quinoa, Cooked and Cooled
1 Cup *Caramelized Red Onion
1 Cup Shredded Light Cheddar
2 Cups Chopped Green Apples
1 Cup Sliced or Slivered Almonds, Toasted
1 Cup Thinly Sliced Fennel
1 Cup Golden Raisins
1 TB Chopped Parsley
3 TB Sherry Vinegar
2 TBs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
½ Cup **Apple Juice, Reduced to 1 TB (or 1 Tsp Honey)
Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper
On a large platter, layer the greens, quinoa, onions, cheese, apples, fennel, raisins, almonds, and parsley.
In a jar or small bowl, whisk the vinegar with the olive oil, add the Dijon, apple juice, sea salt, and a few grinds of pepper. Taste and adjust seasoning. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and serve.
*To caramelize the onions, slice the onions in half and then slice thinly. Heat 2 TB of olive oil in a sauté pan. When warm add the sliced onions, 1 Tsp of turmeric, a ¼ Tsp of sea salt and ¼ Tsp of freshly ground black pepper. Cook and stir for 5 minutes over medium heat, add 2 TBs of balsamic or sherry vinegar and cook until the vinegar cooks away and the onions are brown and soft. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
**To reduce the apple juice, pour it into a sauté pan, and over low heat, reduce it to 1 TB or until it is syrupy.