Yogurt with Toasted Quinoa, Dates, and Almonds

By • March 9, 2012 • 46 Comments

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Author Notes: Last November, Merrill and I and our friend Sharelle pored over the lunch menu at Sitka & Spruce in Seattle. And we all immediately homed in on the strangest item on the menu: yogurt with toasted quinoa, dates, almonds, and rose salt. The dish -- the clear winner on our crowded table -- was like a Turkish recipe in a West Coast cloak. At home, without rose salt, a little digging in my pantry produced a jar of olive salt, which worked beautifully. A good flaky sea salt will work just fine, as well.Amanda Hesser

Serves 1 (can easily be doubled, tripled, etc.)

  • 1/2 tablespoon red quinoa
  • 5 shelled pistachios (raw or salted, either will work), chopped
  • 5 almonds, chopped
  • 6 ounces whole milk Greek yogurt
  • 2 medjool dates, pitted and chopped
  • Pinch of freshly grated lemon zest
  • Flaky sea salt or other coarse salt -- or olive salt if you can get hold of some
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons best quality olive oil
  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Pour the quinoa into a small saute pan and place over medium heat. Toast the quinoa -- it will begin popping when it's toasted, and as soon as it is pour it into a bowl to cool. Spread the pistachios and almonds in a small baking dish and toast in the oven for 5 minutes. Remove and let cool.
  2. Spread the yogurt on a small plate or shallow bowl. Sprinkle on the quinoa, pistachios, almonds, and dates. Fleck with lemon zest and sea salt, and finish with a sprinkling of olive oil.
Jump to Comments (46)

Comments (46) Questions (1)

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7 months ago cooking in the canyon

This is delicious! I've just made for the first time with golden quinoa, and hazelnuts instead of pistachios. Unfortunately, I had to wing it on the lemon zest, and just scraped what I could off of the lemon with a fork (only tools I had at the office). I'm really looking forward to modifying it and trying all sorts of variations. A great way to use up the package of Medjool dates I had tucked in the pantry!

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

7 months ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Love that you winged it in our office!

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9 months ago Faith

Do you rinse the quinoa first and toast it wet? It doesn't sound like that is what you do but just need to check...have been reading that quinoa needs to be rinsed. Cannot wait to try this dish...thanks.

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

9 months ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

I don't rinse it!

Stringio

9 months ago kimberly.godwin

MMMMMM..... I just made this and it is soooo simple and crazy delish. Don't leave out the lemon zest! It made all the difference. I chopped up alot more nuts than what it calls for and was happy I did. (I also think a couple cranberries chopped would be a nice bright addittion.)

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9 months ago Neophyte

Tantalizing enough to make me spring for several ounces of olive salt. I don't think I'll be disappointed.

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9 months ago Anne

This was really yummy! I used driec cranberries because I didn't have dates. The fresh lemon zest makes it! I'll me making this again soon.

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

9 months ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

The fruit is very much interchangeable -- thanks for giving it a try!

Stringio

9 months ago Amy Perlsinsky

I just made this for breakfast and it was so delicious!!!! I did decrease the amount of yogurt by quite a bit though as 6oz is way too much for just me! Such a delightful surprising flavours though!

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over 1 year ago Kattey

This is delicious, I underestimated the pairing of such simple ingredients. so good! didn't add oil and it wasn't missed- but the salt! now that's something else all together!

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over 1 year ago ortolan

Finally got around to making this recipe as written, with dates. I bought some beautiful, large fresh Medjools and used marcona almonds, I was so excited. I have to say that it is leaps and bounds more delicious with prunes instead of dates! The plump tartness of the prunes and good, spicy, flavorful olive oil make this superb.

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over 1 year ago Julieek

So you just eat the yogurt by the mouthful, Ortolan? I didn't think that pita would work either. But it looks pretty yogurt heavy to eat on its own - especially if it is full fat Greek yogurt with olive oil. Greek yogurt in its many manifestations is often an accompaniment to something else. I thought that this might be the case here as well. I did order the rose salt online!

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over 1 year ago ortolan

I *just* finished a beautiful bowl of this. I use Fage 2%. If you are unaccustomed to the intensity of Greek Yogurt, I suppose you could substitute whatever yogurt you love eating for breakfast. I've also made this for many of my friends, who have loved it. The olive oil actually works to cut the richness of the yogurt, believe it or not.

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over 1 year ago Julieek

Thanks, Ortolan! I will be sure to give this a try. The way that it was spread on the plate (above) gave me the impression that it was a kind of 'dip' (a sweet tatziki or labne) or to be had with a bread or something. I am sure that it is delicious!

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over 1 year ago Julieek

What would you serve this with? Pita? Any other suggestions?

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over 1 year ago ortolan

It's a very filling breakfast. Just serve it with coffee or tea! I think pita would be terrible with it.

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

over 1 year ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Julieek, Ortolan is right that it's filling, but if you'd like a bread with it, I might actually go with something like a biscuit!

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over 1 year ago ortolan

Oh. My. God. This was so much more delicious that I would have ever expected. I used prunes instead of dates, and pecans instead of almonds, and drizzled a bit of honey over the top along with the olive oil for good measure--the flavors came together anyway so beautifully--thank you for this remarkable recipe!

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

over 1 year ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Hey -- glad you tried it. Lots of others also altered the recipe with success; seems to be built for personalization. And if you ever get to Seattle, Sitka & Spruce is a must!

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over 1 year ago ortolan

I shall indeed!

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almost 2 years ago fmacmac

Everyone I have made this for loves it; even though I have to sometimes to persuade them to try it. It's such a delicious, healthy breakfast!

Hilary_sp1

almost 2 years ago Hilarybee

I love this recipe, thank you. I use just almonds and changed out orange zest for the lemon. I drizzled a citrus infused olive oil on top this time and it was even more excellent.

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almost 2 years ago The Mistress of Spices

Would regular quinoa be an OK subtitute for red quinoa?

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

almost 2 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Absolutely.

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almost 2 years ago Lauren Paige

Saw this and wanted it immediately! Didn't have much on hand, but improved with olive oil, orange zest, almonds, raisins, and flax seeds. Delish!

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over 2 years ago fitsxarts

This is incredible. And the perfect excuse to use some pistachio oil I bought yesterday. Thanks for another winner, Amanda!

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

over 2 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Happy to hear you like it!

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

over 2 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Also, here's another great use for that pistachio oil; http://www.food52.com/recipes...

Chef_emily

over 2 years ago epicureanodyssey

Just returned from Seattle where for lunch one day, 3 of us devoured most everything on the menu, including that day's yogurt topped with rhubarb compote, honey and toasted black quinoa. DIVINE!

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over 2 years ago Marta Greber

Hey Amanda, really sorry I didn't link you. I always do it and just forgot this time. Will never happen again :)
I love your recipe!

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

over 2 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

No worries, and thank you for making the fix. I did get a little Def Con 1 -- next time will wait a bit before leaving public comments.

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almost 3 years ago weshook

I just tried this for breakfast this morning; I didn't have dates in the house, so substituted raisins. I also toasted the nuts and the quinoa in the same pan on the stove (I'm lazy). This is really well balanced both texturally and in terms of taste. I love the tanginess of the yogurt with the salt and the sweetness of the raisins. And I kept thinking of the olive oil all day. YUM! definitely having this again and I am so glad that I toasted extra quinoa and nuts--I think that the combination would be great on salad.

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almost 3 years ago vivanat

I saw this recipe pop while out of the country. Today is my first morning home and I went out to obtain the items I didn't have for the sole purpose of making this my breakfast.