- ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground sumac or lemon juice
- 800 g pumpkin, peeled, cut into small chunks
- 2 medium red capsicums
- ½ cup black quinoa
- 1 cup natural almonds (kernels)
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 bunch watercress, sprigs picked
- ½ cup shaved pecorino cheese
Preheat oven to 180 C. Line to oven trays with baking paper.
Put half the oil into a large bowl with the cumin and sumac. Season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Add pumpkin and toss to coat in the oil mixture. Transfer the pumpkin to one of the baking trays.
Halve the capsicums, skin-side up, on remaining oven tray. Roast pumpkin and capsicum for 30 mins or until tender. Transfer capsicum to a bowl; cover with plastic wrap. Stand for 5 mins.
Meanwhile, place the quinoa in a saucepan with 1 cup of water; bring to the boil. Cover, reduce to a simmer and cook for 10 mins. Remove from the heat, keep the saucepan covered and allow the grains to gently steam for another 4 to 5 mins. Transfer to a wide bowl and allow to cool.
Put almonds on an oven tray and roast 5 to 7 mins. Chop coarsely.
Peel the skin from the capsicum and almonds into the bowl with the quinoa. Add the remaining oil and vinegar and toss to combine. Season to taste.
Arrange the watercress on a serving platter. Add the quinoa salad and top with pumpkin and pecorino.
Quinoa, pronounced “keen-wa”, is cooked and eaten as a gluten-free grain alternative, but is in fact a seed. While it might be relatively new to many of us, quinoa has been a staple food for thousands of years in the Andean region of South America. It has delicate, slightly nutty taste and chewy texture. Quinoa is rich in several B-group vitamins required to turn the food you eat into energy to fuel your body. A serve of quinoa will provide you with folate, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6 and smaller amounts of niacin. It is available in black, white and red varieties.
Photo: Bauer/Ben Dearnley