Quinoa with Dried Cherries & Pistachios

Over the summer, I started making a salad with Orzo, Red Grapes and Pistachios. The ingredients are simple and the flavor combination is astounding! The salad has been a hit every time I’ve made it, both for family gatherings and for pot luck dinners. 

Quinoa with Dried Cherries and Pistachios

Quinoa with Dried Cherries and Pistachios

But I don’t always have orzo on hand and sometimes the red grapes aren’t as sweet or firm as I’d like them to be. As with many recipes, I often I switch things up. Sometimes I don’t have a particular ingredient and other times, I want to change the flavor a little bit. I rarely document the different variations that I make from the original. This quinoa salad combinations was so yummy that I couldn’t resist sharing it. 

Enjoy!

Quinoa with Dried Cherries and Pistachios

Quinoa with Dried Cherries and Pistachios

Rainbow Quinoa with Dried Cherries and Pistachio

Rainbow Quinoa with Dried Cherries and Pistachio

Quinoa with Dried Cherries and Pistachios

Makes 12-15 as a side

Ingredients

3 cups quinoa
4 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons olive oil or butter
8 ounces dried bing cherries
zest of a whole lemon
juice of 1/2 lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
3/4 cup pistachios, shelled (preferably roasted and unsalted)
 

Directions

1. In a medium sized pot, heat olive oil or butter. Add quinoa and stir to coat the kernels. Let the quinoa heat through and toast a little bit. 3-4 minutes.
2. Add water to pot. Bring to a boil. Cover with a tight fitting lid and turn down the heat to a simmer. Simmer for 18 minutes.
3. Take the pot off of the heat. Let stand for 5-10 minutes.
4. Put the quinoa into a large bowl. Add the cherries and toss to combine. Let the quinoa cool to room temperature.
5. Add the lemon zest and juice. Taste. Add kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. These ingredients can remain in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
4. Add pistachios when you’re ready to serve the dish. Tastes best at room temperature.
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Eat, Drink & Be Yummy!
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