Butter Leaf Lettuce and Quinoa Salad with Oranges

The goal of every single recipe that you make should be the balance of flavors.  The right amount of sweet, sour, umami and salt will always render a perfect flavored dish, however it’s not that easy to achieve on a consistent basis.  I do find that achieving that perfectly balanced recipe can often times come in the form of salad because of all the different components you can add in like vinegar for sour, prosciutto for umami, candied pecans for sweet and Kosher salt for salt.

 

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To give some more sustenance to this Butter Leaf Lettuce and Quinoa Salad with Oranges I used Bob’s Red Mill® Red Quinoa.  It helped balance this salad out by soaking up some of the delicious vinaigrette dressing and not making it too acidic.  The quinoa also helped add some protein to the dish and some texture with it’s unique bite.  It could definitely be me, and how I cooked it, but the red quinoa seemed to have a nice bite to it, almost as if it was perfectly al dente.

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Ok enough with the culinary speak!  With all of these things going on, I wanted to add in some seasonality so using butter leaf lettuce and fresh figs were key  to building it up and making it oh so delicious.  I always say that recipes are guidelines so find out what’s on sale and what’s in season and use it!  While the balance is nearly perfect in this salad recipe it could certainly take some different ingredients and still be tasty.  And the vinaigrette, to die for; At the very least make that!

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It’s a nice combo of champagne vinegar, grainy mustard, honey, 1 fresh vanilla bean seeds, shallot, olive oil and fresh lemon thyme!

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There’s a nice pic below for pinning!

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Butter Leaf Lettuce and Quinoa Salad with Oranges
 
Try this refreshing and delicious Butter Leaf Lettuce and Quinoa Salad with Oranges recipes that will be sure to become a new family favorite!
Ingredients
For the Salad:
  • 2 heads of butter leaf lettuce leaves
  • 4 oranges cut into segments (supremes)
  • 2 figs cut into thin wedges
  • ½ head of thinly sliced fresh fennel
  • ½ thinly sliced red onion
  • 1 cup of cooked and chilled Bob’s Red Mill® Red Quinoa
  • 2 julienne slices of prosciutto ham
  • ½ cup of candied pecans
  • ¼ cup of goat cheese crumbles
  • Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
For the Dressing:
  • ½ small diced shallot
  • ⅓ cup of champagne vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon of grainy mustard
  • 1 ½ tablespoons of honey
  • seeds of ½ fresh vanilla bean
  • ¾ cup of olive oil
  • Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Dressing: Whisk together all of the ingredients in a medium sized bowl and set aside
  2. Salad: Mix together all of the ingredients in a large bowl and drizzle on some of the vinaigrette and serve.

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