Thursday, 8 January 2015

Warm Quinoa and Roasted Cauliflower with Balsamic-Tahini Dressing

It's back to work and school. Dave just started back into his Masters classes, every Thursday night he's not home ... which means I feel not an ounce of guilt when I make a meatless dinner. 

Another recipe with tahini in it. I don't know what it is, but there is something so addicting about the flavour. I love the concept of mixing quinoa with any roasted veggie, tossing it in a dressing and adding cheese and other yummy toppings. It is pretty healthy for being so comforting. This recipe can basically be a choose your own adventure - I often roast sweet potato and mushrooms along with the cauliflower. And then instead of the feta and pea shoots you could do anything (goat cheese, walnuts, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds etc). To me, it's more then satisfying as a meal, but you could add a chicken breast to the top or maybe some chickpeas if you insist.

Warm Quinoa and Roasted Cauliflower with Balsamic-Tahini Dressing
Serves 4 as a meal

1 head cauliflower
4 tablespoons olive oil (divided)
Salt and Pepper
1 cup quinoa
2 cups vegetable broth
2 tablespoons blasamic vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup tahini
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 clove garlic, crushed
pea shoot

Preheat oven to 425 degrees (400 if using convection as I did). Slice cauliflower into long florets, keeping as much stem as possible. Toss into large roasting pan, drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil over florets, sprinkle generously with salt and pepper and toss together. Roast in oven for approximately 30 minutes total, scraping and flipping at the half way point. Keep an eye on it in the last five minutes, cook until crispy and edges are dark. 

While cauliflower roasts, put quinoa and vegetable broth in a medium saucepan and bring to boil. Once boiling, cover and turn to low to simmer for 15 mins - don't peak or stir! Remove from heat, fluff with fork, cover and set aside until ready to assemble.

Make dressing by combing balsamic vinegar, remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, honey, tahini, soy sauce, and garlic in a bowl whisking until all combined. 

In a large mixing bowl combine the cooked quinoa and roasted cauliflower before pouring dressing over and combining - move fast because the dressing will soak in quickly. Top with crumbled feta (or cheese of choice) and pea shoots (or the greenery or nuts of your choice).


- use the biggest pan/roaster you can for the cauliflower - anytime you roast veggies you don't want to crowd them.
- I never rinse my quinoa like the packages say to - and I've never had a problem (but I also never wash my fruits or vegetables so maybe you shouldn't trust me on that one)
- If you don't have vegetable broth for the quinoa, water is fine, but any broth is better

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