Quinoa with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, Mushrooms + Arugula (with Creamy Pistachio Sauce)

photo (2)I love summer for so many reasons. My close proximity to the beach is an obvious one. Then there’s the inspiration that comes from having too many cherry tomatoes in your garden. Trust me, it’s a good thing! Combine that with Farmigo Wednesdays and boom- it’s magic. A couple of weeks ago, my neighbor came over to pick up her Farmigo order and she brought me a big ‘ol bag of pistachio nuts. How sweet! So far, I’ve used them to whip up a pesto sauce and also the sauce below that I’ve been putting on everything (helllloooo gluten-free pretzels!) including this quinoa dish that I brought with me to our “vegan feast” (aka our girls day in the Hamptons). It was a hit, so enjoy and be sure to let me know what you think in the comments!

For the creamy pistachio sauce you need:

  • 1 1/4 cup pistachios, soaked in water at least 30 minutes
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tablespoons umeboshi plum vinegar*
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 cup water (more as needed)

Blend in vitamix until creamy, add more water if you want to thin it out! * If you don’t have ume vinegar, sub white wine vinegar & a few pinches of sea salt. This sauce can totally be made in advance and kept in fridge until you want to use it!

For the Quinoa dish you need:

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 pound shiitake mushrooms, sliced thin
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes
  • 2 large handfuls arugula
  • 2 tsp finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • sea salt & pepper

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Slice the cherry tomatoes in half (leave some small ones whole if you want) and toss them with a bit of olive oil, salt, and pepper. Place them cut side up on a baking sheet lined with wax paper or parchment. Let them slow roast for about 1 hour, then turn the heat to 300F for another 20 minutes or so. Oven times will vary so check them periodically.

imageMeanwhile, you’re going to cook your quinoa (and make your pistachio sauce if you haven’t already). Drain the quinoa, and set it aside.

Next, heat the olive oil in a large non-stick skillet over high heat. Add garlic and thyme to the pan, cook till fragrant about 30 seconds. Add the mushrooms and a big pinch of salt. Stir them and let them soften and brown (about 5-10 minutes) then transfer to a large mixing bowl with the quinoa and arugula. Stir it all up to combine. Throw the chickpeas in that same skillet with a little more olive oil + salt, cook until they’re slightly browned. Add them into the bowl and mix well. The serve with a scoop of creamy pistachio sauce and dig in! Makes approx 4 servings.

Tasteful Tips: I always make a big batch of whatever grains I’m using for a recipe (like quinoa) and save the extra plain so I can repurpose it throughout the week. It’s a real time-saver.

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