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Ooooh – you’re in for such a treat with this superb winter salad. Last week I was lucky enough to eat at Fig restaurant, which is located at the Fairmont Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica. I was very excited as I’d heard chef, Ray Garcia, doesn’t just pay lip service to “Sustainable” cuisine, but he actually lives and breathes it. You’ll find him wondering around the local farmer’s markets, purchasing only what is fresh and seasonal to cook up into some of the most exquisite dishes I’ve tasted in years.

I was given a little bag of red quinoa and a recipe on leaving the restaurant and decided to give it a go this weekend. The result was utterly delish – and here it is. I have taken a few liberties and customized it according to what I could find at my farmer’s market.

3 1/2 ounces quinoa (red quinoa if possible)

1 1/2 cups of veggie stock

1 sprig rosemary

1tbsp olive oil

1 small bunch of broccolini (or broccoli florets), chopped into bite sized pieces

1 granny smith apple, peeled, cored and cubed

2 ounces swiss chard, stalks and veins removed, roughly chopped

2 ounces butternut squash, cubed

1 ounce slivered almonds



1 cup orange juice

1/4 cup raw honey

1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar

1cup olive oil

1/2 tsp salt


Reduce the orange juice down to 1/2 cup by simmering in a pan, and then chill. When cool, mix with other dressing ingredients and set aside.

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F and roast butternut squash sprinkled with a little olive oil until it’s tender (about 20 minutes.)

Cook quinoa in the stock, adding the rosemary. When cooked, drain and toss in a little olive oil.

Saute apple, Swiss Chard and blanched broccolini (to blanch, simply add to pan of boiling water for 1 minute).

Mix roasted and sauteed veggies with quinoa and dress with a little of the dressing. Careful not to overdress the salad, you’ll have a lot of dressing over, which you can keep in a jar for later.

Sprinkle with almond flakes.


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One thought on “WARM QUINOA SALAD

  1. I made this and I can’t believe how delicious it is! The absolute best quinoa dish I have ever tasted. Top restaurant quality for sure. I made it easy on myself by buying packaged cubed butternut squash from TJ’s and chopping the other items the night before. A big hit!!!

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