quinoa + fig salad with basil dressing

It may be sacrilegious to say this, but I can’t wait for autumn. Crisp mornings, terracotta leaves, sweater weather and hot coffee — I love the nip of day that only autumn can bring. But before I dust off the roasting pins and get crazy with pumpkins and apples, I’m savoring every last vestige of summer, which includes a fig and quinoa salad. Inspired by Tartelette’s Fig & Tabouleh version, I wanted to amp the fresh fruit and use up all the basil lodged in the back of my fridge.

And it was a success! Sweet and savory — the tough quinoa gets a full-on fruit massage with the bursts of berries and yielding figs. Enjoy!

1 1/2 cups dry quinoa
3 cups water
8 large figs, diced
1/3 cup dried cherries
1/4 cup blueberries
1 cup packed basil + 2 tbsp diced for garnish
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1 garlic clove
1/4 + 2 tbsp cup olive oil
juice of one lemon
salt and pepper

In a large saucepan, bring the quinoa and water to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, covered until all the water has been absorbed (about 15-20 minutes). Remove from the heat, fluff with a for and place in a large bowl to cool for 20 minutes. While the quinoa cools, blitz the basil, almonds, garlic and oil until the basil is chopped and the dressing is chunky. Normally, I would LOVE a pesto, but there’s something rough and rustic about a basil dressing. So, go easy on the blitzing.

Toss with the figs, dried cherries, blueberries and lemon juice. Add salt and pepper to taste, and chow down ASAP.


journey to buff salad recipes