Roast vegetable quinoa salad

cooked red quinoa

Image via Wikipedia

This tasty salad was inspired by a recipe by Yottom Ottolenghi and his brilliant new vegetable book Plenty. Instead of couscous though I used organic red quinoa, and I added avocado and salad greens.

While I used pumpkin and carrot, this recipe would work as well with other sweet root vegetables such as kumara (sweet potato) and parsnip.


  • 1/2 pumpkin, deseeded, skinned and cut into 3cm cubes
  • 4 carrots, skinned and cut into 3cm chunks
  • 3 cloves of garlic with skin left on
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 whole star anise
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp dried chili flakes
  • Avocado oil (or extra virgin olive)
  • 1 large avocado, cut into chunks
  • 1 bunch of spring onions diced
  • A few handfuls of salad greens, I used rocket and cos lettuce from my garden
  • Zest of 1 lemon finely grated
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 cup of quinoa with 2 cups of water
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Cut up the root vegetables and place on a baking tray along with the garlic, cinnamon, anise and bay leaves. Sprinkle over some chili flakes and oil and toss to coat. Place in a pre-heated oven at 200ºC for 40 minutes, giving a turn half way.
  2. I cook my quinoa in a rice cooker, as it steams it very well. Otherwise you can cook in a pot, simmering until there is only a small amount of water left then taking off the heat, placing on a lid and wrapping in a tea towel, allowing the last waster to be absorbed.
  3. Cut up the avocado and spring onion and place in a large salad bowl along with lettuce greens and lemon.
  4. Once the quinoa and vegetables are cooked, place to one side to cool a little. You can combine everything while still a little warm. To combine, remove the spices, squeeze the garlic out of the skin then toss through the salad with the quinoa. Taste, season and serve.
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