I love the texture of quinoa. It’s so weird. Which is why I also love this Orange Ginger Quinoa Salad. The texture of the quinoa offsets the softness of the grilled vegetables.
Orange Ginger Quinoa Salad: This colourful, flavourful dish came about from pork tenderloin inspiration and a beautiful hot day. This beautiful hot day was the first of the season, and I enjoyed it immensely by spending the day editing my cookbook on my back porch, and the evening with friends, a barbecue and a Perfect Manhattan.
Life is grand.
I went with asian-type flavours for the tenderloin marinade and got inspired to do something to match. I love my food to match.
So this Orange Ginger Quinoa Salad was born. Filled with grilled vegetables, fresh herbs and greens, and a dressing that is to die for.
I made the dressing initially with a bit of honey — but it isn’t necessary. The sweetness from the fresh squeezed orange juice is more than enough for this dish (and keeps it Community Dump friendly).
If these flavours aren’t your jam, and you’re okay with using raw veggies instead — give this Lentil Quinoa Salad a go 🙂
Follow the directions below to make this one. I served it with Sesame Soy Pork Tenderloin, but this salad can definitely stand alone — especially with some chickpeas or grilled shrimp or additional protein added in.
Orange Ginger Quinoa Salad
- 1 cup quinoa + 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 tsp sea salt + more to taste
- 6 – 8 asparagus stalks, ends trimmed
- 1 small zucchini, cup lengthwise
- 1 large portobello mushroom
- 2 small sweet peppers, cut in half, seeded
- 1/2 red onion, quarters but kept attached to root
- handful greens (spinach, mustard greens, etc.)
- snow peas, slightly steamed if desired
- 3 green onions, coursely chopped
- 1/4 cup *pickled red onion (optional)
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped (optional)
- Orange Ginger Dressing: 1/3 cup fresh squeezed o.j. + 1 tsp orange zest + 1 Tbsp soy sauce + 1 Tbsp toasted sesame oil + 2 tsp fresh grated ginger + 2 tsp sambal olek + black pepper
- Whisk together Orange Ginger Dressing ingredients and set aside.
- While the barbecue is warming up to High-Medium, prepare vegetables and set in a bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
- Add quinoa to a heavy-bottomed, medium-sized pot and toast the grains for a minute or two. Add water and bring to a boil. Add salt, reduce to simmer, and cook about 15 minutes. Remove from heat, but keep lid on until ready to serve.
- Place onion on the grill for 10 minutes, turning halfway. Grill zucchini, peppers, mushroom for 8 minutes, turning halfway. Grill asparagus for 2 minutes, turning halfway.
- In a large bowl, place greens, snow peas, green onion and top with quinoa and the Orange Ginger Dressing.
- Chop grilled vegetables and stir in with the rest of the salad.
- Top with pickled red onion and fresh basil (both optional).
- *Pickled Red Onion: slice red onions and cover in boiling water a few minutes. Drain then top with red wine or raw cider vinegar. Let onion marinade for at least an hour, up to a week. Store in a glass jar in the fridge.