As cute as caviar – Black quinoa, adzuki beans salad with fennel, carrots and mushrooms
Aussi mignon que le caviar – Salade de quinoa et haricots adzuki, fenouil, carottes et champignons
I had bought some adzuki beans a while ago, yes I know there are so many kinds of beans, and this one is one among many others. It’s a bean mainly grown in the Himalayas and used in Asia in sweet preparations, they’re mostly known as red beans. Of course, I am not Asian, therefore in my culture beans are prepared in savory dishes and I wanted to try to prepare them in a more Western way, because after all a bean is a bean. I love black quinoa, it tends to be more flavorful and earthy than white quinoa and its nuttiness in this dish allied with the sweetness of fennel and red beans make it a palate pleasing combination.
Honestly, I was not sure I would post this because I thought it will be another quinoa/bean dish which is not the first on on my blog. After the first bite, I definitely thought it was blog-worthy, the colors were so contrasting all together and it resulted in a delicious and harmonious blend of flavors.
After yesterday delicious snapper with kumquat sauce I had shot, which for whatever reason my camera decided to not “save”, and after I ate everything, realized that not even one shot was there. I was wondering if this would happen again with this red bean dish…It seemed like my Canon was in a good mood today, and decided to keep this one. It happened a few times before and tends to be frustrating, especially after the terrible week I had.
Sometimes to speed up the cooking process of beans that have not been previously soaked, I add a little baking soda, it does reduce cooking time.
You can eat this salad warm or cold, either way it’s delicious.
Ingredients for 4
- 1 cup black quinoa
- 1 cup adzuki beans
- broth (1/2 onion, 1/2 carrot, 1 celery stick, 1 bay leaf, thyme)
- 1 shallot, diced
- 2 carrots, sliced in half lengthwise then crosswise
- 1 fennel bulb, diced
- 1 cup cremini mushrooms, diced
- 1 garlic clove
- 3 tbs cilantro, finely chopped
- salt and pepper
For the vinaigrette
- 2 tbs olive oil
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1/4 tsp cumin powder
- salt and pepper
Cook beans in water with all carrot, onion, celery, bay leaf, thyme. Cook for about 45 minutes until the beans are soft. Drain and rinse.
Steam quinoa like you would do with rice.
In a pan, heat olive oil. Add shallot and let brown, add garlic and cook for another minute. Add carrots and fennel. Cover and let cook for about 10 minutes. When the vegetables are half cooked, add mushrooms, salt and pepper. Stir well and cook until the mushroom water evaporates.
Combine quinoa with beans, then add the vegetables. Let it cool.
For the vinaigrette, add all ingredients together mix well. Pour vinaigrette on the vegetable/quinoa mixture. Add cilantro, toss and serve.
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