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Fruit, Nut & Gorgonzola Quinoa Salad

Fruit, Nut & Gorgonzola Quinoa Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette | www.foxeslovelemons.com

I’ve been cooking for two people for about eight years now. I still struggle with making the appropriate amounts of things. Especially when it comes to pastas and grains. Jeff and I used to have a running joke about the amount of pasta I would end up making for two people. I never measured it, just dumped it into the pot until it looked like “enough.” Well, “enough” always ended up being approximately “way-too-much-we-don’t-even-have-enough-sauce-for-all-of-these-noodles.”

Fruit, Nut & Gorgonzola Quinoa Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette | www.foxeslovelemons.com

I’ve gotten better about pasta over the years, but only because I now have a small kitchen scale that I use to weigh out proper portions of dry pasta before cooking. Let’s just say I haven’t quite gotten there with grains. Grains recipes are generally written as a cup measurement of the grains-to-water ratio. Quinoa recipes are almost always written for 1 cup of dry quinoa (+ 2 cups of water).

Fruit, Nut & Gorgonzola Quinoa Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette | www.foxeslovelemons.com

Let’s just say that one cup of dried quinoa makes A LOT of cooked quinoa. As in, three cups. Which doesn’t sound like a lot, until you factor in how filling quinoa is. Then, three cups really is a lot. Needless to say, every time I try to make quinoa as a side dish for the two of us (and always forget to scale down the 1:2 quinoa:water ratio), I end up with leftovers that I must transform as new and unique lunches throughout the week.

Fruit, Nut & Gorgonzola Quinoa Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette | www.foxeslovelemons.com

For this quinoa salad, I opened my pantry and fridge and just threw all the good stuff I could find into a bowl with the leftover quinoa. Crunchy Granny Smith apples and celery, sweet juicy red grapes, rich pecan halves, tangy Gorgonzola cheese and a quick apple cider vinaigrette jazz up the leftover quinoa (or any grain) you might have on hand.

Fruit, Nut & Gorgonzola Quinoa Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette | www.foxeslovelemons.com

Fruit, Nut & Gorgonzola Quinoa Salad

Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients:

For the Apple Cider Vinaigrette:

  • 1/4 cup apple cider or apple juice
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • Pinch of kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

For the Salad:

  • 1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, cored and chopped
  • 1 cup cooked and cooled quinoa
  • 1/2 cup red grapes, halved
  • 1/3 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
  • 1/4 cup pecans

Directions:

  1. Make the Vinaigrette: In large bowl, whisk together cider, vinegar, honey, mustard, salt and pepper. While whisking, slowly drizzle in oil until all oil is incorporated.
  2. Add all salad ingredients to bowl with vinaigrette; toss to combine. Serve immediately or refrigerate up to 1 day.

 

This recipe originally appeared here on the Naturebox blog.

14 Responses to “Fruit, Nut & Gorgonzola Quinoa Salad”

  1. Nancy — January 23, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    I’m totally guilty of making way too much pasta/grains, etc when I cook. I have a digital kitchen scale so I should look up how much pasta is needed for two (that’s what the internet is for!). We love quinoa so thanks for a new way of using it. I gotta admit I’ve been getting pretty sick of the way we prepare it. This looks super yummy, Lori!

    Reply

  2. Jane's Adventures in Dinner — January 23, 2014 at 3:04 pm

    What a fresh treat!

    Reply

  3. Tara — January 23, 2014 at 4:18 pm

    Gorgeous, now I have to got eat lunch as my stomach just growled looking at your picture!!!

    Reply

  4. Lori | Foxes Love Lemons — January 23, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    Your blog does the same thing to me many days, Tara! Thank you!

    Reply

  5. Lori | Foxes Love Lemons — January 23, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    Thanks Jane!

    Reply

  6. Lori | Foxes Love Lemons — January 23, 2014 at 3:40 pm

    So, I was getting ready to give you the scaled amounts I use for pasta for different scenarios (main dish, side dish, when I’m really hungry, when I want leftovers, etc), and then I realized you’re in Canada. And I’m way too lazy to convert to the metric system vs. our stupid American system. So now you’re on your own.

    I will say that scaling the pasta really helps because once you figure out what weight is the appropriate amount for two, you can kind of always use that as a point of reference.

    Reply

  7. Marjory @ Dinner-Mom — January 23, 2014 at 7:59 pm

    Such a colorful salad. I would love to have some leftovers of this in the fridge. :)

    Reply

  8. Mary Frances — January 27, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    I can almost smell this through the screen. Beautiful! But isn’t it nice when you have leftovers ready to be turned into lunch?

    Reply

    • Lori | Foxes Love Lemons replied: — January 27th, 2014 @ 4:17 pm

      Thanks, Mary. I love having leftovers for lunch, so making a big batch of grains is not at all a bad thing :)

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  11. Marcia — May 28, 2014 at 1:15 pm

    Can you use a different cheese?

    Reply

  12. Lori | Foxes Love Lemons — May 28, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    Oh, definitely, Marcia! Blue cheese would work well here, too. But, if you’d like something a little less “stinky” I would suggest a nice sharp cheddar cut into small cubes, or even fresh mozzarella.

    Reply

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