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Author Notes: I've eaten many bowls of this salad for several summers now. I first discovered it at my local café in the United Arab Emirates. This is my attempt at their dish. There's a fair bit of chopping involved but totally worth it. The quinoa is a cinch to cook then it's just a matter of throwing it all together with some lemony olive oil dressing. —Dawn Andersson | Cake and Travels
- 1 cup Quinoa
- 1 bunch Curly kale
- 1/2 Red capsicum
- 1 Small lebanese cucumber
- 1 Small fennel bulb
- 1 Lemon, juiced
- 6 tablespoons Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon Nutritional yeast (optional)
- Salt & pepper
- 1/4 cup Slivered almonds, toasted
- Rinse and rub the quinoa grains with your fingers under running water. Drain and place in a medium saucepan. Add 1 plus 3/4 cup water and bring to the boil. One boiling add 1/2 tsp salt, reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cover the pot. Cook for about 15 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed and you can see the tiny spirals curling around the seed. Remove from the heat, and place a clean dishcloth over the pot and pop the lid back in place. Rest for 10 minutes before turning out into a deep serving bowl.
- Wash the kale and trim off the stems, tear into bite size pieces and set aside. Remove the capsicum seeds and membranes and slice into thin strips, cut in half if they are too long. Slice the cucumbers in quarters length-ways and cut out seeds and membranes. Slice these on an angle into thin strips too. Trim the fennel and slice at an angle into equivalent strips.
- Squeeze the juice from the lemon and place in a glass jar with a lid. Add the extra virgin olive oil, nutritional yeast, and some salt and pepper. Shake for a uniform consistency, taste, you're looking for a slight tang. Adjust accordingly.
- Add the vegetables to the cooled quinoa and add 4 tbsp of the vinaigrette, mix thoroughly before topping with the toasted almonds. Serve with the remaining dressing on the side.