By Nic Midgley
This salad is a real crowd pleaser as quinoa, cooked beetroot and sunflower seeds are all ingredients that are suitable for all types of dosha. Soaking the quinoa for a few hours before cooking makes it even more gut friendly and easy to digest, but if you’re short of time you can skip that step.
100g quinoa, soaked in filtered water for 8 hours
½ red onion
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
70g sunflower seeds, toasted
500g cooked beetroot, grated
small bunch flat leaf parsley
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
Cook the quinoa in salted, boiling water for 10-15, drain and leave to cool.
Finely chop the red onion and set aside in a small bowl, with a pinch of salt and a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar, while you prepare the rest of the salad. Doing this mellows the flavour of raw onion.
Heat a non-stick frying pan to medium-high and dry fry the sunflower seeds until they turn golden brown. This adds a lovely nutty flavor to the salad. Watch them closely as they burn easily. Once toasted, set aside to cool.
The easiest way to prepare the beetroot is to use a food processor with a shredding attachment – this helps reduce the mess! If you don’t have a food processor I suggest using a box grater in the sink so that you can contain, and easily clean up the beetroot juice.
Pick the leaves from the parsley and roughly chop. The stalks are not required for this recipe but you could save them for making vegetable stock.
Once the cooked ingredients are cool you can assemble the salad. In a large bowl mix the quinoa; grated beetroot; chopped onion (including the liquid it has been soaking in); toasted sunflower seeds; chopped parsley. Gently mix together – the whole bowl will turn a vibrant purple colour! Add the olive oil, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste.
This salad keeps really well in the fridge for 2-3 days.