Spring is indisputably here, and one of the best thing about it, apart from sunshine, lighter evenings and Game of Thrones, has to be the arrival of spring vegetables and the queen of them all, asparagus. (Yes, asparagus is a girl, and I may have been carried away by the Game of Thrones thing)
For me a quinoa salad is just a way of getting as many different vegetables, and usually some feta, onto my plate at the same time as possible, (see also roasted vegetable & feta quinoa) so it’s the obvious accompaniment to the glorious new selection of vegetables. It’s also insanely easy to throw together.
Crunchy and spicy radishes, freshly shelled broad beans (do you call these fava beans in the US? My spell check really doesn’t like it!) and chargrilled asparagus mixed through some quinoa and topped with crumbled feta and finely sliced mint leaves. It’s fresh, light and the perfect spring lunch, even better served with a side of mustardy watercress leaves.
Spring Vegetable Quinoa with Feta & Mint
1/2 cup quinoa
Large handful broad beans
10 sticks of asparagus with the tough ends removed
Large handful of radishes, finely sliced
1/2 a lemon
A good slice of feta, crumbled
Small handful of mint leaves, finely sliced
Watercress to serve
Start by rinsing the quinoa thoroughly before bringing it to the boil in a pan of cold water over a high heat. Turn the heat down and simmer for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, drain the quinoa through a sieve and rinse it in cold water to cool it. Drain thoroughly and transfer it to a large serving bowl.
In the meantime, shell and boil the broad beans for 5 minutes. Drain them and run them under cold water, then squeeze each bean out of its papery skin.
Heat a griddle pan over a high heat and put the asparagus on, without any oil. Turn after a few minutes and remove once slightly charred on both sides and slice into chunks.
In the serving bowl mix together the quinoa, beans, asparagus, radishes, the juice of half a lemon, some salt and pepper and a little splash of olive oil. Sprinkle over the mint and feta and serve with some fresh watercress.