Simple Strawberry Quinoa Salad with Peas and Dill

Strawberry Quinoa Salad 3The real beauty of cooking in the summer is that it is almost effortless. There are so many vegetables and fruits to be enjoyed at the peak of their vibrancy, that very little cooking, prepping or fussiness is required. Don’t get me wrong, I love a braised beef recipe or slow cooked Bolognese. But I revel in the effortless masterpieces one can create with simple seasonal ingredients. It’s vibrant food at it’s best, doing all the work! There’s no need for heavy sauces or complicated salad dressings to mask the taste of “less than fresh” vegetables.

Take this summer strawberry quinoa salad for example. With summer still clinging onto every cell, the peas, strawberries and dill come from a local organic farm I recently stumbled across in this neck of the woods (the boreal to be exact). They had a bounty of fruits and vegetables for me to pick from, I literally could NOT take a selection of everything home. Since strawberries were just coming off their second field and the peas looks ready to eat on the spot they were my first choice and in essence the inspiration for this effortless salad.

Strawberry Quinoa Salad

The only work required was the slow relaxing process of shucking the peas, listening to them ping off the bottom of the steal bowl while the quinoa was cooking. With the sun on my face and a bag of peas on my lap, I made my way through a pound of freshly picked pods in a matter of a few minutes. In hindsight, I wish I had dragged the experience out longer. I can honestly say it was one of my favorite parts of the day.

Strawberry Quinoa Salad 2

To keep things effortless, this salad was enjoyed this with a small charcuterie platter, but it would be equally delicious alongside grilled fish or chicken.

Strawberry Quinoa Salad 4

Strawberry Quinoa Salad with Peas and Dill

Salad for 2

  • ½ cup dry quinoa
  • 1 cup fresh peas
  • 1 cup strawberries cut into fork sized pieces
  • 2 green onions, cut on the bias
  • 1 cup parsley leaves, pulled off the stem
  • ¼ cup fresh dill, roughly chopped

Cook the quinoa according to the package directions or use this technique. During the last 3 minutes of the cooking time, add the peas to the pot. Place the quinoa and the peas in a large bowl and allow it to cool for 10- 15 minutes. Add the strawberries, green onion, parsley and dill. Toss with the vinaigrette below and season with salt and pepper.

Serve with a cheese plate/charcuterie platter or grilled fish or chicken.

For the dressing:

  • 1 ½ Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 ½ Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp agave (or honey)
  • ½ tsp lemon zest
  • ¼ tsp salt

Whisk together all the ingredients until well combined. Toss with Strawberry Quinoa Salad with Peas and Mint.

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What is your favorite summer/early fall salad? Let me know in the comments below!

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7 Responses to Simple Strawberry Quinoa Salad with Peas and Dill

  1. Amber H September 3, 2013 at 4:34 pm #

    Oh France, your pictures are stunning!!! What a lovely salad.

    xo,
    –Amber

  2. Ashley Smyth Srokosz September 4, 2013 at 1:34 am #

    I’m trying to think of some fancy salad, but honestly? Tender lettuce heads just came in the past few weeks in our CSA delivery, and I’ve missed them before the heat of summer turned them all to seed! Tender lettuce with some EVOO and aged balsamic … yes, please!

  3. Joanne (eats well with others) September 5, 2013 at 11:27 am #

    This is the kind of salad that I love! So much fresh fruit and veggie flavor without that much effort!

    • beyondthepeel September 5, 2013 at 9:56 pm #

      Anything that is effortless is my kind a meal. hahahaha

  4. Koko September 5, 2013 at 3:24 pm #

    I love this kind of dish!! Just simple, and tons of veggies. It looks delicious!

    • beyondthepeel September 5, 2013 at 9:56 pm #

      Thanks Koko. I love my veggies. The more the better! And those strawberries are tooo die for!

  5. inspirededibles September 11, 2013 at 12:13 am #

    I was staring at this salad the other night and your lovely photos had me hypnotized. Simple maybe but just perfect. (especially love the snap with the Perrier bottle and the loose flowers – beautiful).

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