It’s been a pretty inconsistent climate in my part of the world. We wake up to a crisp, slightly chill morning followed by a very warm afternoon and then, a pleasant evening. While some days we reach out for a hearty, steaming bowl of soup, on other days, we prefer a light salad. In one way, it’s adding a variety in our life. The air still doesn’t scream autumn but it sure is prepping me to think of stew, roast chicken, baked bread, baked pie and bid goodbye to salad for a while.
Being the summer girl that I am, I find it very difficult to let go the sunshine, let go the warm clear sky, the long days and summer fruits. But I am gearing up, getting ready for the change, for apple and pears, and to fill the home with fall flavors.
Until then, stay with me on this salad, which is definitely light but can very well be served on a cold winter evening. Mix the dressing while the quinoa is still warm and pair it with toasted, crusty bread. Comforting.
Quinoa is still not a favorite ingredient in my home and we are taking time to make it a part of our regular diet. It took a very long time for me to start cooking with this very healthy grain like crop that is filled with protein, fiber and iron. I was intimidated by it and I failed a couple of times. And then slowly the concept started settling down making me realize that it’s one of those ingredients which is versatile, like rice, and can be prepared in various ways. Sweet or Savory!
My favorite part of the salad, beside the fact how colorful it looks, is the creamy dressing. Ricotta mixed with mint, garam masala and fresh lime juice for the tang. At the end, pour some extra virgin olive oil slowly while beating vigorously to emulsify the two components to a perfect creamy dressing. It is currently my favorite salad dressing, where at times ricotta can be replaced with yogurt and garam masala can be replaced with some other spice like cumin or coriander powder.
Both the salad and the dressing can be made couple of days in advance and served cold or at room temperature.