Warm Apple Sausage Almond Quinoa

This weekend festivities have centered around a “healthy habits” party my friend threw on Saturday night.  Some girls got together, exchanged recipes, had at home facials and talked about food and exercise habits.  It was a great time and I’m so glad we did it.  I brought my quinoa quiche bars while my friends made a rustic tomato and pepper soup, banana bread, apple crisp and protein shakes.  I’m excited to try the Green Monkey at home!

While I was making quinoa for the bars, I made some extra because I wanted to try a recipe from IowaGirlEats.  She made a Whole Foods inspired quinoa dish with apples, almonds, maple sausage and dried cranberries.  When I read this recipe the first time I was drooling at work.  I love finding new ways of eating quinoa and this one had Fall Flavors (yum!!) written all over it.

Of course I adapted a couple of things, I just can’t help myself.  I don’t usually have green onions, so I omitted those and added some small diced bell peppers instead.  Also, I tasted it without any dressing and felt it was a little dry for my taste, so I mixed up a little dressing based on the Whole Food’s ingredient label she so wisely took a picture of.  This dish reminded me of making chicken salad, use what you like!

Into a bowl mix:

  • 1.5 cups cooked and cooled quinoa
  • 3 oz cooked and crumbled sausage (I used turkey patties)
  • 1 small apple, diced
  • couple strips diced red or green bell peppers and/or green onions or even celery perhaps?
  • 2 palm fulls of sliced almonds
  • 2 palm fulls of dried fruit (I had a medley of dried raisins, cranberries, and cherries), give them a course chop
  • salt and pepper to taste

At this point you could be done, but I wanted a little bit of a dressing for the dish.  In the whole food’s variation, there is curry powder, oil, lemon juice, white wine vinegar, honey and orange juice, but I didn’t have most of those on hand.  From this list, I knew I wanted something a little sweet and a little acidic.

So into a small bowl, just eyeball it:

  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 Tbs white wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbs apple cider
  • drizzle of agave nectar or maple syrup
  • tiny pinch of curry powder (go easy)

Taste and adjust as needed, make more if you want it really sauce-y.  I love the taste of curry but you don’t want to overpower the other flavors, and you can always add more!

Mix the dressing with the salad and taste.  I really like the salad like this, but I loved it EVEN MORE when I microwaved it for 30 seconds! Oh man, the apples get soft, the sausage flavor comes alive and the harshness of the curry melts away.  I’m trying to keep this as a week-day snack, but I might just have some on a lazy Sunday afternoon.  Enjoy!!


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