Saturday, January 10, 2015

Quinoa, beet and avocado bowl

It seems post-holiday, squeaky-clean eating is all the rage right now.  And believe you me, I am just as in need of it as the next gal (or dude). This month I will feature a few uber-healthy dishes to get your belly, body, mind and spirit all back on track from the sugar-, dairy-, meat-, and booze-fest that was December.

So here you have it...your vegetarian, dairy-free, whole grain, plant protein-infused, veggie-packed, seasonally-appropriate bowl of wholesome goodness.  The great thing about this recipe is that it's so delicious & satisfying (the beet-avocado combo is beyond) that you will want to eat this way all year round!

This recipe makes 4 servings so I make everything up without dressing the salad and keep it in my fridge for a week of healthy lunches!

Serves 4

4 small-medium beets, scrubbed & tops removed
1/2 c. sliced almonds
2 c. cooked quinoa (either warm or cooled - both would be delish)
1 ripe but firm avocado - diced
4 handfuls wild arugula
2 c. little gem or romaine hearts - torn into bite size pieces

1 small shallot - minced
1 small garlic clove - minced
large pinch of kosher or sea salt & fresh ground pepper
1 1/2 T. Dijon mustard
1 t. honey
1 t. orange zest
2 T. red wine vinegar
1/3 c. olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Wrap beets in foil and roast one hour.  Remove beets, carefully open foil and cool until you can handle them.  Slip skins off with your hands and dice.  Cool to room temperature. (Can be made up to 3 days ahead and stored in refrigerator)

Decrease oven temperature to 350.  Spread sliced almonds on a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer.  Toast in oven 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove and let cool.

In a small bowl, whisk together the shallot, garlic, S&P, Dijon, honey, orange zest and red wine vinegar.  Slowly drizzle in olive oil while whisking to emulsify. (Can also be made up to 3 days ahead and stored in refrigerator)

In a large bowl, toss the arugula, little gem (or romaine hearts), beets, avocado and almonds generously with the dressing (you may not use all the dressing).  Divide the quinoa (serve warm or cooled - your choice) into 4 bowls and top with the salad mixture.

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