Slice of Life
On my way to the market last week, I was so drawn to figs I had an epidermal reaction: I had to buy some! I hadn’t eaten one in ages. And then, one stall away, the fresh spinach leaves caught my eye. It didn’t take much more to make me want to have a gourmet salad. All the more so since Mr. Cocotte and I, the two of us, were on our own that day. But, let’s be honest; these occasions are pretty rare, so an excellent little dish and a good bottle of wine, ideal for a romantic meal.
But I can already see you coming with your big hooves because it’s a salad. And yes, a salad! We’re not vegetarians [although we’ve cut back on meat consumption], but I have a fascination with vegetables. Their taste, their appearance, their colours… it’s beautiful, it’s tasty, it’s colourful, and it’s healthy.
My grandparents have a big garden full of fruit trees, and they have always grown their vegetables. Although we weren’t really in charge of harvesting [our job was to pick the fruit], we spent hours in the garden watching the adults work. And one of my favourite snacks was raw carrots freshly harvested by my grandma [don’t get me wrong, I also had my share of cookies, but carrots from grandma and grandpa’s garden remain one of my childhood memories]. Anyway, all this to say that vegetables and I are a great love story that started a long time ago and that I am much more interested in working with them in the kitchen than with meat.
About the quinoa & fig salad
I wanted something very fresh but simple to prepare (no time to spend hours in the kitchen that day and then this scorching temperature), and the ingredients came together in an obvious way. Quinoa, some feta cheese and a few walnuts, and a little Ricardo’s sweet and sour sauce to round it up. We just loved the combination of all these elements. The sweetness of the fig, the delicacy of the fresh spinach and the strength of the feta it really works. This salad will be back on our table regularly for sure! I also think it has a chic feel to it so it would also be perfect for entertaining or special occasions.
If you want to try another gourmet salad, I suggest you take a look at this quinoa & pomegranate salad Just as fresh and easy to make!
QUINOA & FIG SALAD
Pour la salade
- 250 g of dry quinoa
- 150 g fresh baby spinach leaves
- 100 g feta cheese
- 8 fig
- 1 handful of nuts
Pour la vinaigrette (Ricardo)
- 1 tablespoon of mustard
- 1 tablespoon de vinaigre balsamique
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 6 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 garlic clove pressed
- salt & pepper to taste
For the salad
- Cook quinoa according to package instructions. Let cool.
- Cut the feta cheese into small cubes.
- Slice the figs into quarters [or into flower shapes if you like].
- In a bowl, mix all ingredients and sprinkle with coarsely chopped walnuts.
For the vinaigrette
- Mix all ingredients together to make a smooth sauce.
- Pour over salad just before serving.