Monday, October 08, 2012

Rice and Quinoa Salad with Sweet Potato

Ottolenghi's Plenty is one of those books that I kept looking at in book stores time and again thinking that I want to buy it at some point. No need for that anymore since Sarah got it for me as a present. I put it to use the weekend after my birthday party and made my own version of Ottolonghi's Quinoa salad with dried Iranian lime. That is - without dried Iranian lime :-) What I like about Ottolenghi's recipes is that, if you're a more or less experienced cook, you can use them as an inspiration and modify them the way you like it.

(from Yotam Ottolenghi - Plenty)

2 medium sweet potatoes, about 350g each (I used 3)
110ml olive oil
200g mixed basmati rice with wild rice (I used plain basmati rice)
200g quinoa (I used red quinoa)
4 garlic cloves (I'm not that much into garlic, so I used 2 only)
3 tbsp shredded sage leaves
3 tbsp roughly chopped oregano
2 tbsp ground dried Iranian lime (I omitted that)
6 tbsp shredded mint
4 spring onions, green parts only, thinly sliced (I omitted these)
1 tsp lemon juice
160g feta, broken into pieces
salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 200°C. Peel the sweet potatoes and cut them into roughly 2cm dice. Spread on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper, drizzle over half the oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for about 20-25 minutes, or until tender.

Meanwhile, cook the basmati (and wild) rice as instructed on the packet; drain. Place the quinoa in a pan with plenty of boiling water and simmer for 9 minutes; drain in a fine sieve. When dry (but still warm), transfer the rice and the quinoa to a large mixing bowl.

Pour the remaining oil into a small frying pan to heat up, then fry the garlic for about 30 seconds, or until it turns light golden. Add the sage and oregano and stir as you fry for about a minute. Watch closely and make sure that the herbs or the garlic don't burn. Pour the contents of the pan over the rice and quinoa. Add the roast sweet potato with its oil.

Add the lime powder (if you have any), mint, spring onions, lemon juice, feta, some salt and pepper. Toss everything together gently and try not to mesh up the sweet potato and the feta. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve warmish or at room temperature, garnish with spring onions.

This salad keeps in the fridge for about two days. I took my leftovers to the office for lunch.

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