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Quinoa and Roasted Vegetable Salad

Photo by Lynne Calamia
This may be one of my most nutritiously sound recipes to date. After all, quinoa delivers a complete protein, and sweet potatoes and parsnips deliver just about everything else. And then there are the pepitas, which are packed full of micronutrients, and as you know, doctors hate apples.
By the way, this is what Thanksgiving tastes like.
A note about parsnips: Larger parsnips can have a tough woody core towards their top end, which is not ideal for roasting. Chop the skinny root end into rounds, then cut around the core and chop the remaining sides into 1/4 inch cubes.
This recipe first appeared in EveryDayCook.
ACTIVE TIME: 20 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour 15 minutes
Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Software

  • 1 1/2 pounds sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1 pound parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed in cool water and drained
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped sage, about 4 medium leaves
  • 1 small Gala or Honeycrisp apple, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 3 ounces roasted pepitas

Procedure

  • Heat oven to 425°F.
  • Toss the sweet potatoes, parsnips, and red onion with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and 1 teaspoon of the salt and spread evenly onto two half-sheet pans. Roast for 15 minutes, then toss the vegetables, rotate the pans, and roast until the vegetables are tender and golden brown, about another 10 minutes. While the vegetables are roasting, prepare the quinoa.
  • Bring 2 cups of water and 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt to a boil in a 2-quart saucepan. Whisk the rinsed quinoa into the boiling water, add the cinnamon, cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool covered for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
  • Combine the remaining olive oil, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, mustard and salt in a small canning jar or other sealable vessel. Cover and shake like a martini to emulsify. (But don't use your cocktail shaker...you don't want to get fat in there.)
  • Toss the warm vegetables, quinoa, herbs, and dressing together in a large bowl. Add the apple and pepitas just before serving warm or at room temperature.