This quinoa salad recipe is very quick and easy to make. Cooking quinoa with pesto really helps to saturate it with flavour - which is why this salad doesn't even have a 'formal' dressing. It doesn't need one. For this easiest of vegetarian quinoa recipes, all you need are a few herbs, sun dried tomatoes, pumpkin seeds and a squeeze of lemon juice and you have a scrumptious salad ready to go.
This dish keeps really well so it's perfect to make in advance for a barbeque, picnic or lunch box.
1 cup of quinoa
2 cups of water
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoon of pumpkin seeds
6 sun-dried tomatoes in oil
small handful of fresh basil
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
Rinse the quinoa several times, drain and place in a pot with the water. Add the pesto and a little salt (about ¼ teaspoon) and some freshly ground black pepper. Stir well, put the lid on and bring up to the boil. Once the water boils, immediately lower the heat to a really low setting and cook for 15 minutes until all of the water has been absorbed. Turn off the heat. Remove the saucepan lid, place a clean towel over the quinoa and cover again with the lid and leave for about 10 minutes for dry fluffy quinoa. Fluff up with a fork and leave to cool.
While the quinoa is cooking, prepare the other ingredients for the salad. First toast the pumpkin seeds. To do this, place a frying pan or skillet over a medium heat. When the pan is hot, add the pumpkin seeds (do not add oil) and cook for 2 or 3 minutes, shaking the pan regularly until the pumpkin seeds have turned a light golden brown. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
Coarsely chop the sun-dried tomatoes and basil and add them to the cooled quinoa with the pumpkin seeds and lemon juice. Check the seasoning and serve at room temperature.