Quinoa with Apricot Almonds and Asparagus

quinoa-apricot-asparagus

I just realized this great quinoa salad is filled with “A” ingredients: asparagus, almonds, and apricots! I made a massive batch of this quinoa salad last week so we’d have enough leftover to come home to after a weekend away. We spent the weekend on a beautiful lake in Michigan for our friends’ wedding and I knew I’d want something to come home to for dinner after a long day of traveling. I didn’t do exact measurements, but that’s the beauty of this salad: you can make simple tweaks to make it your own. Here’s an approximate of what I used:

1 box of quinoa, rinsed and cooked in the rice cooker (it was about 5 cups once cooked)

1 bunch of asparagus spears, cut into bite-sized pieces

about 2 cups of dried apricots, cut into small bits

1 bag (about a cup and a half) of sliced almonds

about a cup of mango vinegar

about 1/3 cup of olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

mango-vinegar

My sister brought me back a bottle of mango vinegar from France when she was there over the winter and I’ve been wondering what to do with it ever since. Then it hit me when I knew I wanted to make a cold quinoa salad with a fruity flavor! Unless I have French readers (bonjour!) or you happen to have mango vinegar lying around your kitchen, you can swap it with another fruity vinegar like pear or pineapple, which I see pretty commonly in specialty or health food stores. Or, you could even give some orange juice a go, though I can’t vouch for how great it’ll taste…I assume good.

asparagus

almonds-apricots

almonds-apricots-asparagus

I cooked the quinoa in the rice cooker then cooled it in the fridge overnight. Into the quinoa I mixed the almonds, chopped apricots, and cut asparagus which I nuked in the microwave for 1:30 minutes just to soften it up a bit. I then poured on the vinegar and olive oil, and threw on a few pinches of salt and pepper, then mixed til it was all combined. Voila! I love whole grain salads with a little chew (apricots) and crunch (almonds). The sweet and savory mix with the slightly sour vinegar did a little dance on my tastebuds. It was a wonderful meal to come home to!

quinoa-salad

3 Comments

  1. nee
    Posted September 7, 2011 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    Yay you used the vinegar! Was it super mango-ey?
    Did you ever make that pretty pasta? I wanna see a pic of that!

  2. Janel
    Posted September 7, 2011 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    It wasnt super mango-ey…you could prob use any fruity vinegar. I splashed on some pear vinegar the other day to liven it up. And yes I used that pasta…months ago! http://eatwellwithjanelblog.com/walnut-butter-heaven/

  3. nee
    Posted September 7, 2011 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    Hahahaaa… oh yeah, forgot. 🙂

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