the taste space

Pomegranate-Lime Asparagus Quinoa Salad

Posted in Mains (Vegetarian), Salads by janet @ the taste space on July 8, 2011

Aren’t I lucky to have a guy who will make me The New Best Salad Ever? Rob is also more likely to repeat his recipes, so I am hopeful it was make a reappearance soon!! :)  If you don’t believe Rob, take it from me: It was fabulous, heavenly, and a whole lot of swear words came out when I wanted to describe how wonderful it was… although I am not sure why swear words describe it so eloquently. Perhaps because I don’t swear often, and I rarely eat a salad so awesome. Every component was delicious (it helped that we had perfectly ripe Ataulfo mangoes) and together they were golden. I usually do not go to the trouble of so many different components, but this was so worth it. It wasn’t just fried tofu, it was marinaded tofu with roasted garlic. It wasn’t just rice, it was cilantro-lime rice. And then there was the perfect mango salsa overtop. Fresh carrots and cabbage for crunch. Sweet baby spinach. This is how you make epic salads…

But let me tempt you with another delicious salad.

It may not be the typical pomegranate season, but they were on sale at Sunny’s last week.  Pomegranates from Chile must have their own special season. . which thankfully allows me to enjoy pomegranates in the summer!

In fact, since many of my friends and family are heading (or went) to Turkey recently, it had me salivating when I remembered my summer love affair with pomegranate molasses. Sweet and sour, tart and delicious, how could I ignore you for so long?  Since I have moved in with Rob, this may become a trio. Heck, Rob’s love affair with mangoes persists, so I guess we’re even. :)

(For the record, I finished my first bottle of pomegranate molasses within 6 months and now that Rob and I have bunked up, we have TWO open bottles!)

I based this salad on my Turkish Bulgur Salad but added in steamed asparagus and served it overtop baby greens for a glorious feast.  It had all the elements of a nice main meal salad with quinoa, asparagus and greens. The dressing is tart from the pomegranate molasses with a background of lime. The chili flakes are optional, but I liked the zip it added. The pomegranate seeds and almonds add a nice crunch. Better than the (since dethroned) Best Salad Ever?  I’m not sure… A variation on a similar theme, that’s for sure! :)

Now to bring back the bulgur bonanza!

This is my submission to Deb for this week’s Souper Sundays, to this week’s Healthy Vegan Friday, and to this month’s Healing Foods featuring whole grains, and to Ricki’s new Summer Wellness Weekends.

Pomegranate-Lime Asparagus Quinoa Salad

1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed well
1 cup vegetable broth
2 cups asparagus, trimmed and chopped into 1-inch pieces
1 tbsp fresh lime juice (half a lime)
zest from 1 lime
1 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
1 clove garlic, pressed or minced
pinch Aleppo chili flakes (optional)
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 cup almonds, toasted
seeds from 1 pomegranate
4 cups baby greens

1. Place the quinoa in a medium-sized pan over medium heat and toast until fragrant, about 3-5 minutes.  Add to broth in a covered pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the water has been absorbed and the quinoa is tender, about 15-20 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, steam the asparagus for about 5 minutes, or until bright green and crisp-tender.

3. Continue to prepare the dressing by combining the lime juice and zest, olive oil, pomegranate molasses, garlic, chili flakes and salt.

4. Combine the asparagus, quinoa and dressing and stir together well. For the salad, plate quinoa overtop baby greens, sprinkle with pomegranate seeds and toasted almonds. Serve warm, at room temperature, or cold.

Serves 2-3.

18 Responses

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  1. MIke said, on July 8, 2011 at 6:37 AM

    This recipe looks unbelievable, gonna try it for sure!


    Mike @TheIronyou

  2. rszumlak said, on July 8, 2011 at 10:30 AM

    Janet, I assure you that there’s enough space in my heart to love both you and mangos.

  3. Joanne said, on July 8, 2011 at 1:26 PM

    I’m up for pomegranates no matter what season it is! They must be in season SOMEWHERE, right? Gorgeous salad! Now i just wish I had more asparagus so that I could make it!

  4. Ricki said, on July 8, 2011 at 2:58 PM

    Probably one of the most visually beautiful salads I’ve seen! Thanks for submitting it to WW! :)

  5. DebinHawaii said, on July 10, 2011 at 6:57 PM

    This does look delicious–I love the combo of the lime and pomegranate–so refreshing. Thanks for sending it to Souper Sundays. ;-)

  6. Corina said, on July 11, 2011 at 5:28 AM

    I love the colours in this. Pomegranite molasses keeps popping up everywhere at the moment so I’m going to have to get myself some and try it.

  7. H said, on July 14, 2011 at 9:59 AM

    This is great – I was a constant user of pom molasses for a while. I like a sort of lahmacum – sweet flatbread, topped with fried minced lamb/coriander seed/pomegranate molasses/lemon juice/spinach etc, in the oven for a few minutes, then topped with coriander leaf.

    • Saveur said, on July 14, 2011 at 10:08 AM

      That sounds like a lovely spread, H! :) Pomegranate molasses have definitely been revived in my kitchen lately. :)

  8. […] Wednesday Lunch: Spinach, Mushroom and Jack Quesadillas Dinner: Panko-Crusted Tilapia + Pomegranate-Lime Asparagus Quinoa Salad […]

  9. Cara said, on July 27, 2011 at 12:04 PM

    It all sounds fabulous, but most of all the dressing. It would be perfect on so many things. Yum!

  10. Simona said, on July 29, 2011 at 5:39 PM

    A beautiful salad, to be sure, with my beloved toasted quinoa. Am I the only one who has not yet tasted pomegranate molasses? Thank you so much for contributing to Healing Foods.

  11. Ashley said, on August 14, 2011 at 12:38 PM

    Oh wow this salad looks seriously amazing! And what a perfect use for the pomegranate molasses you gave me. :D

  12. […] think of rice, quinoa can substitute as a quick-cooking grain. Other times, I will use it as a base for a salad, as I find it works well with Mexican […]

  13. […] Turkish Bulgur, Pomegranate and Almond Salad Turkish Eggplant, Tomato and Lentil Stew with Pomegranate Muhammara (Syrian Roasted Red Pepper and Walnut Dip) Iraqi Pomegranate Stew (Shorbat Rumman) White Bean and Barley Salad with a Tomato-Pomegranate-Tarragon Sauce Pomegranate-Lime Asparagus Quinoa Salad […]

  14. Ellen Lederman said, on March 15, 2012 at 9:44 PM

    Thanks for this recipe. Definitely enjoyed it. It was a good way to lose my pomegranate molasses virginity! Not having Aleppo pepper, I used red pepper flakes. Having some cut up orange bell pepper, I threw that in. And I tossed the quinoa and asparagus with another Tablespoon of p. molasses and used the dressing to toss on the salad greens since I didn’t relish eating naked greens (unlike some people at a raw food potluck that I recently attended—who were just eating greens with nothing on them!). Enjoyed it and felt that it was a healthy and interesting salad. Next time, for extra credit in the nutrition department, may add some grape tomatoes.

    • janet @ the taste space said, on March 17, 2012 at 8:33 PM

      Hey Ellen, Thanks for the feedback (hehe, losing your pomegranate molasses viriginity). I love the veggie additions for your own version of the salad. :)

  15. […] Asparagus Quinoa Salad (adapted from Tastespace) Yield: 8 appetizers or 4 […]

  16. […] Pomegranate Lime Asparagus Quinoa Salad – from Janet at Taste Space. […]

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