For the first time this year, we subscribed to a CSA. If you’re not familiar, CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. Basically you buy a share of fruits and vegetables from a local farm at the beginning of the summer and for 20 weeks you’re supplied weekly with fresh, local produce. Our day care has an agreement with a nearby farm to have CSA shares dropped off at their facility and we can pick it up there when we get the kids. It saves me the delivery fee!
Combined with what we grew ourselves, we haven’t really had to buy much produce other than fruits that don’t grow locally (bananas!) or things that we go through quickly (you would not believe how fast my kids can go through a pint of berries). And because I don’t do much cooking feom scratch during the week (frozen veggies are a gift from the Gods), I often find myself with a surplus to use up over the weekend.
Enter this salad! I had an acorn squash from the CSA, kale from our garden, and I hadn’t yet found a use for some tri-coloured quinoa I bought at Bulk Barn a few weeks ago.
Pause for confession: I have a slight addiction to bulk food stores. My pantry is overflowing with plastic bags filled with all sorts of goodies: Quinoa, lentils, and dried beans; various types of flours and grains; several kinds of salts and sugars; nuts and seeds. I try to store them in Mason jars, but there’s definitely a back log. The last time I was there I saw some interesting looking pastas that will soon be making their way home with me.
I bought the tri-coloured quinoa because it was so pretty! The black beans aren’t necessary but added another punch of protein and fibre.
And the vinaigrette! Sweet and tangy with just enough hint of garlic. Yum! It makes a ton, so I gave some to my sister and took the remainder to work to eat during the week. It’s not a dish the rest of my family was interested in 🙂
Autumn Black Bean and Quinoa Salad with Maple Dijon Vinaigrette
Recipe Type: Lunch, Dinner
Cuisine: Vegan, Vegetarian
Serves: 6 servings
A hearty and delicious salad that can be served warm or cold
- 1 acorn squash, diced
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 cup tri-coloured quinoa (or regular if that’s what you have)
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 4 cups kale, chopped
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, toasted
- 1 15 oz can black beans, rinsed
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 2 cloves garlic
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
- Bring 2 cups of vegetable broth to a boil. Rinse quinoa thoroughly and add to boiling water. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the broth is absorbed.
- Put the chopped kale into a bowl and add the lemon juice and 1 tbsp of olive oil. Using your hands, massage the lemon juice and oil into the kale to soften it
- At medium-high heat, add remaining oil to a non-stick pan. Add squash and brown sugar and cook, stirring occasionally, until squash starts to brown and can be easily pierced with a fork.
- To make the vinaigrette, combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, dijon mustard, garlic and salt and pepper and mix well.
- In a large bowl, mix quinoa, black beans, squash, kale and pumpkin seeds. Add Maple Dijon dressing and mix.
- Enjoy warm or cold