Monday, 16 August 2010

Warm pomegranate, quinoa and chick pea salad

A treasure trove for your lunchbox, full to bursting with ruby red pomegranate seeds and fresh herbs. I wanted to make something healthy for supper that would keep well as lunch for the next day - and this fit the bill exactly. The preserved lemon and pomegranate molasses give a blast of reviving sweet and sour to perk up that post-lunch lull...

Serves about 3 for supper or 2 with a bit left over for lunch:

100g white quinoa
1 can chick peas, drained and rinsed
200g shallots, peeled and halved
3 tbsp pomegranate molasses
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
3 preserved lemons, skin-only, chopped finely
salt and pepper
a large bunch each of mint and parsley, roughly chopped
Seeds of 1 pomegranate
30g toasted flaked almonds

1) Take 1 tablespoon each of the oil and pomegranate molasses and toss the shallots in the sticky marinade then roast for 25 mins, turning occassionally, at 190c/375f/gas mark 5. 10 minutes before the end of cooking add the chick peas and turn them in the marinade to coat, and also add the almonds on a separate tray to toast in the oven.

2) Bring a pan of water to a brisk boil and add the quinoa. Boil furiously for 10-15 minutes until tender, then drain through a sieve.

3) Place the herbs, lemon, pomegranate seeds, almonds, shallots, chick peas, and quinoa into a large bowl. Whisk together the remaining olive oil, pomegranate molasses and lemon juice, and stir into the salad. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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