Sunday, March 4, 2012

Culinary Chronicles: Quinoa and Fennel Salad with Citrus Dressing, Fresh Peas and Fava Beans

Yesterday was one of those perfect weather days here in Southern California.  This is what it looked like at 7:00 am.
  (Just want it noted that the skull+ antler garden art is not remotely my style, but my landlords')
I went to a barbeque last night and after such a beautiful day I really wanted to bring something super fresh and spring-like.  At the farmer's market I saw lots of fresh fava beans and fennel bulbs, and I knew I already had some quinoa cooked up and waiting in the frig.  A quick stop at Tawny's to raid her garden peas, mint and citrus trees and I had a delicious salad.  Worth noting the recipe for future use.  If it's not so spring-like where you are, try this warm quinoa breakfast drink instead, and come back to this salad when spring hits you.

The salad:
3 cups cooked quinoa
1 fennel bulb, sliced thin and cut into strips
1 red pepper, sliced thin and cut into strips
1 cup fresh picked and shelled peas (or frozen if you need to)
1 cup fresh fava beans (if you can't find them just use two cups peas, dried beans would work, but the point of this salad is freshness!)
small handful of fresh mint, finely chopped (about 3 Tbsp once chopped)
small handful of green portion of fennel bulb (ditto)
zest and juice of two small lemons
juice of one large tangerine
1 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
salt & pepper to taste

Cook the peas and fava beans until just tender.  It's more time consuming, but do it separately.  My fava beans cooked so fast that they were a little too soft, whereas the peas were a little tougher.  Drain each, then throw all ingredients in a big bowl and toss well.  Keep refrigerated until ready to eat to maintain the crunch of the red pepper and fennel.

1 comment:

  1. Oh yum... I wish I had some of this ready for lunch!