Watermelon Quinoa Salad
Ok….starting off by asking the question….do you like quinoa? I’ve found that people are either in the YES or NO column. There are very definite opinions about quinoa. After making it for my brother, he told me quinoa does not “bowl him over” (thought that was a pretty clever play on words) and that’s ok, it’s not for everyone!
When I asked my hubby what he thought of quinoa, he said…”I love playing quinoa when we go to Vegas!” I looked at him with one of those seriously? looks (ladies you know what I’m talking about!) Then he smiled and said yes, I love it, the more the better!
So whether you love quinoa, or never have tried it, this is an excellent option for a bright summer salad!
Very simple ingredients –
- feta cheese
- kalamata olives
- olive oil
- balsamic reduction
We enjoyed it last night with a glass of wine on a hot, hot, hot Fresno evening and it was a perfect light dinner.
This morning as I was packing my hubby’s lunch, I tried it again, just a sample. It’s best super cold – so if you make this, cut up the watermelon, cook the quinoa, chop the olives and toast the almonds, you can mix them together and refrigerate it. Just before serving add the feta and arugula. Dress the salad with a couple drizzles of olive oil and freshly squeezed lemon juice. Toss to coat and transfer it to a beautiful bowl. Top it with a balsamic vinegar reduction and it’s ready to serve!
Leftovers are delicious on day two. This meal is light and very healthy. Don’t worry though, you don’t need to tell everyone how good it is for you. 😀 Enjoy!
Watermelon Quinoa Salad
Watermelon Quinoa Salad - This meal is light and very healthy. Leftovers are delicious on day two.
- 6 cups watermelon cut into small bite sized pieces
- 1 cup dry quinoa
- 4 oz feta cheese crumbled
- 1/2 cup almonds or walnuts
- 2 cups arugula lightly packed
- 1/4 cup kalamata olives cut in half
- 1 lemon
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- balsamic reduction - optional recipe below
- Cook the quinoa according to package directions. When complete, drain and set aside to cool.
- Toast the almonds (or walnuts) in a dry pan on top of the stove over medium-low heat. It will take about 10 minutes to toast them. Watch the pan as you will need to shake it occasion to ensure they do not burn. When they are toasty brown, remove them from the heat and immediately remove them from the pan (If they are left in the pan, they will continue to cook and may burn) and set them on the cutting board. When they are cool enough to handle, give them a chop. You'll want large, crunchy pieces.
- Cut the watermelon into small bite sized pieces. Put these in a large bowl with the kalamatra olives. When cooled add the quinoa and nuts. Add the crumbled feta cheese and arugula. Drizzle with olive oil and an entire lemon. Toss together well, transfer to a beautiful bowl and drizzle with the balsamic reduction. Enjoy!
- This salad is best super cold, so it makes sense to cook the quinoa the day before and chop the watermelon and refrigerate them overnight. The next day assembly is super easy!
Balsamic Glaze - 1 cup of good balsamic vinegar. Place in a non-reactive pan over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer. Turn your fan on because the vinegar is quite pungent! Reduce to medium and continue to simmer for about 10 minutes until the vinegar will coat the back of a spoon. Once cool, tuck it into the refrigerator - it will continue to thicken as it cools. This will last a week in your refrigerator.