This salad is wholesome and has great texture. Adding some smoked paprika gives a really good flavour when paired with the baked aubergine flesh. What makes this salad particularly different is that the aubergines are baked and peeled, then the flesh is broken down until it is almost a puree and it is added to the quinoa.
Quinoa Salad with Aubergine and Fresh Gbejna You will need: 3 aubergines Measure 200g uncooked quinoa and follow these simple instructions to cook 150g cooked chickpeas 120g shredded raw carrots 6 cherry tomatoes cut into 1/2 or 1/4 pieces a pinch of dried basil 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika salt and pepper Finish off the salad with : 2 fresh soft gbejna cheeselets [Gibniet Friski], chopped 6 leaves fresh basil, choppped a handful of fresh parsley, chopped 3 tablespoons pomegranate seeds 1/4 teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 tablespoons apple vinegar
Start by cooking the aubergine. Preheat the oven to 200C. Place the aubergines on a baking tray covered with baking paper. Bake for 40 minutes. Allow to cool completely, then peel them and chop the flesh by using a mezzaluna. The consistency is nearly puree-like.
Prepare all the other ingredients. Place the cooked quinoa in a large bowl. Add the chickpeas, shredded carrots, chopped tomatoes, dried basil, smoked paprika and salt and pepper to taste.
Just before serving, lightly toss the ingredients in the salad bowl then finish off the salad by adding the chopped soft gbejna cheeselets.
Then add the fresh basil and parsley, grated lemon zest and pomegranate seeds. Drizzle with olive oil and apple vinegar. Serve immediately
Freezing Quinoa If you are really pressed for time, you can cook a large batch of quinoa and freeze it in individual portions in ziplock bags. Once the quinoa is cooked, allowing 180 - 360g of cooked quinoa per portion. Allow it to cool completely before putting it into ziplock bags. Squeeze any air out of the bags . When ready to use simply defrost at room temperature and heat in the microwave for a minute in the bag if you want it warm.
I use soft fresh gibniet by Hanini and Quinoa by Tipiak My fresh organic vegetables come from Barbuto