Quinoa, Pear and More: Enjoy Warm Middle-Eastern Salad

If you like a variety of textures when you dine, Warm Middle-Eastern Salad is right up your alley. It features a chickpea patty with crunchy pistachios, complemented by quinoa, poached pear slices and greens with lemon vinaigrette.

Commonly believed to be a grain, quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is actually a seed. Quinoa is a complete protein and contains almost twice as much fiber as whole grains. It is high in magnesium, B2 (Riboflavin) and manganese, and also supplies iron and lysine. As we have already discussed, chickpeas (also called garbanzo beans) are good for you for a lot of reasons. So is enjoying vegetables in an assortment of colors.

Chefs Ronnie Paige and John Geoghan from the Stern Family Center for Rehabilitation created this entree with Jaime Quin, RD, and Joelle Mazo, dietetic intern, for the 2014 North Shore-LIJ Chef Challenge.

Serving size: 2 cups salad, ½ cup patty, ½ cup quinoa, 3 pear slices.
Serves four.
Preparation time: 20 minutes. Cooking time: 20 minutes.
Per serving: 213 calories, 9 grams of fat, 7 mg of sodium

Ingredients, Chickpea/Pistachio Patty:
2 each, 8 oz. canned chickpeas, water drained
¼ cup, Pistachios
1 tsp., Red pepper
½ tsp., Cumin
½ tsp., Coriander
1 tsp., Granulated onion
1/8 tsp., Black pepper
1 tsp., Oil
½ cup, Yellow onion

Ingredients, Salad:
1 quart, Roman lettuce
1 pint, Radicchio
1 cup, Spinach
1 cup, Arugula
1 cup, Cherry tomatoes
1 cup, Cucumber, sliced

Ingredients, Lemon Vinaigrette:
2 ½, Lemons, fresh, juiced and strained
1/8 tsp., Red pepper
1/8 tsp., Granulated onion
1/8 tsp., Garlic powder

Ingredients, Quinoa:
2 cups, Boiling water
1 cup, White quinoa
¼ each, Lemon, fresh, juiced and strained
¼ tsp., Cumin
¼ tsp., Turmeric
¼ tsp., Onion powder
1 tsp., Vegetable base
¼ each, Red onion, finely chopped
¼ each, Green pepper, finely chopped
¼ each, Red pepper, finely chopped
5 each, Basil leaves, chopped

Ingredients, Fresh Pear:
2/3 each, Pear, sliced
¼ each, Lemon, fresh, juiced and strained
1 cup, Boiling water

Directions, Chickpea and Pistachio Patty:

  1. Sauté white onions, red pepper (1 tsp.), cumin, coriander, granulated onion, and black pepper.
  2. Blend yellow onions, red pepper (1/4 tsp.), chickpeas, and pistachios.
  3. Combine ingredients and form four patties.
  4. Brown patties in 1 Tbsp. of oil for five minutes on each side.

Directions, Quinoa:

  1. Add lemon juice to 2 cups of boiling water.
  2. Add quinoa and cook for 15 minutes.
  3. Add cumin, turmeric and onion powder.
  4. Add 1 tsp. vegetable base and continue cooking for 12 minutes.
  5. Mince ¼ red onion, ¼ green pepper, ¼ red pepper to make ¼ cup.
  6. Simmer for 15 minutes.
  7. Add basil and stir.

Directions, Lemon Vinaigrette:

  1. Whisk lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil.
  2. Add 1/8 tsp. red pepper, 1/8 tsp. granulated onion and 1/8 tsp. garlic powder.
  3. Pour over salad.

Directions, Salad:
Toss spinach, arugula, radicchio, roman lettuce, tomatoes and cucumber.

Directions, Pears:

  1. Blanch pear slices for three minutes in 1 cup boiling water with ¼ lemon, juiced.
  2. Cool pears.

Serving Instructions:

  1. Place 2 cups of salad in the center of the plate. Drizzle with lemon vinaigrette.
  2. Add one warm chickpea/pistachio patty to one side of the salad and a 1/2 cup of quinoa to the other side.
  3. Garnish with three pear slices.
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