Gluten Free Quinoa, Beet and “Goat Cheese” Salad with Walnuts
High-protein quinoa marries beautifully with smooth, creamy cashews and earthy baked beets in this vividly colored salad. Can be served warm or at room temperature – it’s equally delicious both ways!
Gluten Free Quinoa, Beet and "Goat Cheese" Salad with Walnuts
- 3-4 medium red or golden beets or a combination, washed and trimmed (do not peel)
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup vegetable broth or stock
- 1 cup dry quinoa
- 2-3 garlic cloves minced
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon about ¼ cup juice
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons gluten-free Dijon mustard
- 5-10 drops pure plain liquid stevia or 2 teaspoons coconut sugar
- ½ cup walnut halves or pieces lightly toasted
- ⅓ cup fresh cilantro chopped
- Kosher or fine sea salt to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1 batch Cashew Goat Cheese recipe follows
- Preheat the oven to 425°F. Wrap beets in foil and bake until extremely tender, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool, then peel and discard the skins and dice into ¾-inch cubes. Set aside.
- Bring water and broth to a boil in a small heavy saucepan. Rinse quinoa well, drain, and add to water. Return to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low. Allow to simmer, untouched, for 25 minutes, or until all the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa is cooked. Uncover, fluff with a fork, and let sit at least 10 minutes or until cool.
- While the quinoa cools, make the dressing. Heat a small amount of oil in a nonstick pan over medium-low heat and add garlic. Add lemon zest and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add lemon juice, vinegar, oil, mustard, and stevia. Stir well and remove from heat.
- Add the beets and walnuts to the cooled quinoa and toss lightly with the dressing. Add cilantro and season to taste with salt and pepper. Divide the mixture among 4 bowls and top with chunks of Cashew Goat Cheese.
Cashew Goat Cheese
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon white or mild miso
- ½ teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt
- Up to ¼ cup water if needed
- Cover cashews with boiling water and allow to soak for 10 minutes; drain. Place all ingredients in a high-powered blender or food processor and blend until perfectly smooth and creamy, adding fresh water, if necessary, for the mixture to blend (avoid adding too much water or you’ll end up with cheese sauce). Use immediately or refrigerate overnight (it will firm up as it chills).
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