Sweet, pickled, balsamic roasted beetroot pairs with salty chunks of grilled haloumi and crunchy, buttery pinenuts in a quinoa salad fit for a queen!
It’s no secret that I love cheese. And if you’ve been around these parts long enough you know that the queen of cheeses in my opinion is haloumi. You stick a slab of grilled/fried haloumi in front of me and I will crack out a curtsy worthy of Her Majesty herself. There’s nothing like a healthy dose of haloumi to make my belly and tastebuds happy. And when you pair that salty cheese slab with sweet-astringent balsamic roasted beets? I will happily genuflect to that plate. Y’all know that already though after this epic sandwich. One of the first things I bought when I was “allowed” to eat cheese again (apparently when you get half your liver removed you have to be on a low fat diet for a while so your body can heal…) was a big ole block of haloumi. When I was first back on real foods all I had been craving was soup, toast, and jelly beans. Fair enough body, you need that carby goodness and extra sweetness to heal up. I couldn’t force my body to love salads when it needed denser energy sources in order to heal properly. After that phase was over though, my love for all.the.veggies started to come back with a vengeance. When you trust your body to lead you to what it needs you find balance again easily! I made this salad on repeat about three times over the course of two weeks, and I knew I had to share it with you all because it was just that good! We’re hitting all the high notes here: salty, sweet, vinegary, fresh, and filling. And once you’ve put it together it lasts a few days in the fridge so it’s good for a lunch option that you can grab and go in the morning! First, we peel some beets, roll them in maple syrup and balsamic vinegar and roast them until soft. While they are roasting away we cook some quinoa and let it cool, and fry some cubes of haloumi until they are golden and squeaky. Then, we put the whole lot together with a bunch of chopped parsley, roasted pinenuts, olive oil and lemon juice. Every element is simple but perfect. And when you bite into a beetroot wedge and haloumi cube at the same time? Heaven. Make this for your dinner, or lunch, or snacking needs. Just errr…don’t blame me if you find yourself curtsying to your plate…
Roasted Beetroot and Haloumi Quinoa Salad
| gluten free | vegetarian | serves 3ish
- 3 medium sized beetroot
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 cup dried quinoa
- 2 cups low sodium vegetable stock
- 200 gram block haloumi
- 1 bunch flat leaf parsley
- 3 tablespoons pine nuts
For the dressing
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- Preheat your oven to 200C (400F) and line a baking tray with baking paper.
- Peel the beetroot, slice in half, then slice each half into four equal pieces. Place on lined baking sheet. Drizzle the maple syrup, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar over the beetroot pieces and give them a toss to make sure they are all coated. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes or until a fork pierces the centre of the beetroot easily.
- Rinse quinoa well. Place in a small saucepan with the vegetable stock. Bring to the boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer and fit the saucepan with a lid. Allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Then remove from the heat. Stand for five minutes before draining and fluffing up with a fork. Keep at room temperature until required.
- While quinoa is cooking, dice haloumi into small cubes. Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Fry haloumi until golden. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
- Use the same non-stick frying pan to lightly roast the pine nuts. As soon as they start to turn lightly golden remove from the heat. These little guys burn easily!
- To make the dressing whisk everything the lemon juice, olive oil, and crushed garlic together with a little salt and pepper.
- Now, let’s put everything together! Place cooled quinoa and haloumi into a large bowl. Shred leaves from the parsley stalks and add to the bowl along with the dressing. Give everything a thorough toss and then spread out onto a serving dish. Top with beetroot slices and pine nuts.