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Quinoa Pilaf with Spring Peas and Asparagus

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups quinoa
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium shallot, peeled and minced
  • 1 medium clove garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 cups vegetable or chicken broth, low-sodium
  • ½ cup shelled fresh peas, blanched, or petite frozen peas, thawed
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons minced flat-leaf parsley
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound asparagus spears, washed and trimmed, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 small garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

Procedures:

To prepare quinoa: Place the quinoa in a large colander and rinse with cold running water until the water is clear, about 2 minutes. In a medium saucepan, add 2 tablespoons olive oil and heat over moderate heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the shallot and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the quinoa to the saucepan, add the broth and increase the heat to bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to moderate-low cover and simmer until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is tender, about 20 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the peas, cover and let stand 3 to 5 minutes.

To prepare asparagus: Preheat oven to 425°F and place a rack in the center. Arrange the asparagus onto a rimmed baking sheet, pour olive oil over, and season generously with salt, pepper and garlic. Mix until well combined. Spread the asparagus into an even layer and transfer asparagus to the oven to cook, turning frequently with tongs, until tender, about 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer cooked asparagus to a plate.

Transfer the quinoa to a bowl and using a fork, fluff until all the grains are light. Using a silicone spatula, stir in the remaining olive oil and lemon juice and cool until room temperature, about 5 minutes. Stir in the parsley. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.

To serve: Divide the quinoa between 4 warmed dinner plates. Place the asparagus on top of the quinoa, garnish with grated Parmesan and serve immediately.

Tested and perfected in the Sur la Table kitchen

 
 
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