Crunchy Quinoa With Sweet Potatoes

Photograph by Michael Bennett Kress

Quinoa is the greatest new addition to the Passover pantry. It finally received definitive rabbinic approval for Passover in 2014, after a rabbi was dispatched to Peru and Bolivia to see how quinoa is grown.

He learned that quinoa grows at very high altitudes, while the grains that are prohibited on Passover are grown much farther below it. The authorities concluded that there was no risk of intermingling. My husband, Andy, eats quinoa with blueberries for breakfast all Passover long. This dish is a great combination of color and texture.

Serves 6–8

Prep time: 10 minutes; 30 minutes for quinoa to cool
Cook time: 30 minutes
Advance prep: Quinoa may be cooked or salad assembled 2 days in advance
Equipment: Measuring cups and spoons • Cutting board • Knives • Small saucepan • Roasting pan • Spatula • Small frying pan • Small bowl • Whisk • Large bowl

1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon honey
½ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/3 cup dried cranberries
3 scallions, cut into ¼-inch-thick slices

1) Preheat oven to 400° F.

2) To prepare the quinoa, place it in a small saucepan with the water. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes, or until the water has evaporated. Turn off the heat and let the quinoa sit, covered, for at least half an hour. The quinoa may be cooked 2 days in advance and stored covered in the fridge.

3) Place the sweet potato cubes in a roasting pan and toss with 1 tablespoon of the oil. Roast for 25 minutes, or until the cubes can be pierced with a fork. Set aside.

4) To prepare the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining 3 tablespoons oil with the vinegar, honey, cumin, cinnamon, salt and pepper.

5) To assemble the dish, use a whisk to break apart any clumps of quinoa that may have formed as it cooled and transfer it to a large bowl. Add the dressing, and whisk well. Add the sweet potatoes, pine nuts, cranberries and scallions, and mix gently. Serve at room temperature.

Reprinted with permission from New Passover Menu ©2015 by Paula Shoyer, Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.

This story "Crunchy Quinoa With Sweet Potatoes" was written by Paula Shoyer.

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