Time flies when you’re having fun. I can’t believe that July is coming to a close and we are in our fourth and final week of the POM Wonderful Summer Menu Series.
I’ve been having so much fun in my kitchen with POM Wonderful pomegranate juice! It has really proven to be such a versatile ingredient, and has so many applications beyond beverages. As you can see from the recipes I and the other wonderful ladies behind this Summer of POM series have shared, it adds so much flavor and a unique flair to so many different courses.
One other bonus from working on this project is that I was introduced to some wonderfully creative bloggers! It was a pleasure meeting Danica’s Daily, Fitness & Spice and Being Chelsea, as well as last week’s guest contributor, The Wicked Noodle. I think we pulled together some really fun menus! I look forward to following them, and hope you do, too.
My last post for this series is a salad. I wanted to do a hearty salad pasta salad, and considered using macaroni or orzo. But I thought it might be better to shoot for something healthier, so I decided on a POMegranate Quinoa Salad. If you’ve never tried quinoa before, I encourage you to try this superfood. Think of this as a modern macaroni salad. Between all the proteins and vitamins of the quinoa and the antioxidants in POM’s pomegranate juice, you’ve got a super salad!
The robust pomegranate dressing pairs so well with the crunch from the vegetables and the heartiness of the quinoa. It serves quite nicely in its supporting role of salad, and tastes great with grilled chicken, pork or even fish. But I think that the next time I make it, I’ll let it shine on its own by adding some feta cheese. It will be the perfect summer lunch on a busy day!
My sincerest thanks to POM Wonderful for inviting me to participate in this fun series. It was such a tasty experience!
For the dressing:
- 1/3 cup POM Wonderful pomegranate juice
- 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup scallions, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1/4 tsp Dijon mustard
For the salad:
- 3/4 cup quinoa, uncooked
- 1/4 cup dried pomegranate seeds or dried cranberries
- 1 cup English cucumber, peeled and diced
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
- 1/4 cup orange bell pepper, diced
- 1/4 cup yellow bell pepper, diced
- feta cheese, optional
- fresh pomegranate seeds, optional, for garnish (and added crunch)
In a large bowl, combine the dressing ingredients (from pomegranate juice to Dijon mustard). Set aside.
Cook quinoa by placing it in a medium saucepan with 1 1/2 cups water and setting over medium high heat. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer. Cover and allow to cook for about 20 minutes. Allow to cool. The quinoa can also be cooked in advance.
Add quinoa, dried pomegranate seeds or dried cranberries, and vegetables to dressing. Toss gently. Allow to chill in the refrigerator. Before serving, add cheese if desired. Garnish with fresh pomegranate seeds.