Sunday, January 12, 2014

Eggplant, chickpea, quinoa and goats feta salad

In the warmer months I could quite happily live on salad. And to be frank I would be pretty much satisfied with a good old garden salad most days but variety is the spice of life and there are so many delicious salads it would be a shame to limit myself.

This one was inspired by seeing a picture of an eggplant salad on pinterest. That salad was completely different and I still intend to try it, but this salad turned out exactly as I wanted. I wanted something substantial that I could have as a work lunch, so it needed the protein and carbohydrate from the chickpeas and quinoa. I particularly love the flavour combination of goats cheese and eggplant but that can get a bit cloying so I added the parsley to freshen it up. And pine nuts - well every salad benefits from a few of these fragrant beauties.

I prefer to cook my chickpeas from dried, I think they have a better texture. But that does require a certain amount of pre-planning so canned is fine. And as with many of my recipes, the quantities are open to interpretation, if you like something more, there is nothing stopping you playing with the amount.

This salad was delicious warm but is also great cold. The flavours meld together beautifully.

What salads are you enjoying this summer?

Eggplant, Chickpea, Quinoa and Goats Feta Salad
2 medium eggplant cut into 2cm (approx) cubes
3 tbs olive oil
1.5 cups of cooked chickpeas (which is equal to about a can or 1/2 cup dried)
1/2 cup quinoa
1 cup parsley leaves picked
100g goats feta
100g pine nuts toasted

3 tbs olive oil
1.5 tbs red wine vinegar
1 tsp honey
1/2 tsp minced garlic
salt and pepper

Lightly toss the eggplant in olive oil and bake at 180 degrees celcius until golden brown - about 20-30 minutes.

Rinse quinoa thoroughly then boil in about 2 cups of water for about 15 minutes. It is cooked when it becomes translucent and you can see the germ.

Cook chickpeas according to packet or can directions till tender.

In a large bowl combine the warm chickpeas, quinoa and eggplant with the parsley and toasted pine nuts. Crumble feta over, add the dressing and toss to combine.


To make the dressing combine all ingredients in a jar and shake to combine.

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