by Tina Jenkins, FGHG Natruopath
This recipe is one of my all-time favourites! It is great anytime of the year and is a real powerhouse of nutrients. It’s also such a beautiful looking dish to serve up to guests with the gorgeous greens of the fresh herbs and the bright red pomegranate seeds.
The recipe below is a modified version of George CaIombaris’ Cypriot Salad (from his Hellenic Republic restaurant). I have changed the grain to quinoa (instead of freekah) for more protein and left out the honey in the dressing to reduce the sugar content.
The greens in the salad are rich in folate and antioxidants which are important nutrients to support a healthy conception and pregnancy, whilst the nuts and seeds are high in zinc (great for sperm health!), magnesium and fibre. There is another anti-oxidant hit with the delicious pomegranate seeds on top and some beneficial gut bugs in the form of probiotics if you use a good quality yoghurt (not to mention the additional protein and calcium in the yoghurt).
It is a really delicious crunchy salad and pairs well with a slow cooked lamb or grilled fish. It’s also a great vegetarian dish on its own with the protein from quinoa and the lentils (the latter also being a vegetarian source of iron). Enjoy!
Quinoa Salad with Yoghurt Dressing
1 bunch coriander, chopped
1/2 bunch parsley, chopped
1/2 red onion, finely diced
1 cup quinoa
1/2 cup Puy lentils
2 tbsp toasted pumpkin seeds
2 tbsp toasted slivered almonds
2 tbsp toasted pine nuts
2 tbsp baby capers
1/2 cup currants
Juice of 1 lemon
3 tbsp extra virgin olive
Sea salt to taste
1 pomegranate, deseeded, to serve
1 cup thick Greek yoghurt
1 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and ground
Cook quinoa and lentils separately in boiling water until both just cooked. Drain well and allow to cool.
In a hot pan toast the nuts and seeds. Remove and allow to cool.
In a medium bowl mix the salad ingredients (except pomegranate) and season to taste.
Top with mixed cumin & yoghurt dressing and pomegranate seeds.
For the original recipe by George Calombaris click here – Cypriot grain salad