Holiday Fennel Quinoa Salad with Pomegranate and Mint Recipe

holiday-fennel-quinoa-salad-with-mint-and-pomegranate-by-the-hungry-goddess

Sliced, crunchy fennel, ruby pomegranate nibs, golden raisins and fresh mint makes this dish a holiday stunner that has great flavor and color for the holidays – think Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and Christmas or that holiday potluck or party that needs a dish to feed many.

I just want to give a shout-out to Pom Poms for their handy packaged pomegranate arils. I just picked some up at BJ’s and they make my holiday dishing soooo much easier than seeding a pomegranate and being left with a red stains splashed across my kitchen. Plus, their juices, like Pomegranate Cherry, are wonderful for holiday cocktails and mocktails!

The ingredients below are in ranges to make it easy for you to create the best holiday dish for your palate. Some like more fennel and less mint, and well, you know how all of that goes. This recipe can be accomplished in the time that it takes for the quinoa to be made and cool. Add it to a beautiful bowl and platter and you are set.

Happy Holiday Cooking!

Ingredients (serves 4-6 but is easily doubled or tripled):

  • 1 cup of multi-colored quinoa (or whatever quinoa that you love!) – How to Cook Quinoa
  • 1 large or 2 small fennel bulbs sliced thinly (on a mandolin if you have one)
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of golden raisins
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of pomegranate arils
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup of chopped mint (chiffonade style is lovely!) – reserve some leaves to garnish
  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil to finish and for a good toss
  • Salt to taste (be a bit generous to make the fennel pop!)
  • Fennel Pollen to scent the quinoa is optional (see directions below)

Directions:

Prepare quinoa. Set aside to cool. Slice fennel. Once quinoa is cooled, toss all ingredients together and add olive oil to finish!

How to Make Fennel Pollen Scented Quinoa

  • Check the quinoa package to see if the quinoa needs to be rinsed before cooking.  If you are just starting out with quinoa, Whole Foods 365 brand is a great choice and does not need to be rinsed.
  •  Use 1 cup of Quinoa to 1 3/4 cup of water.
  • Add water and quinoa AND 1/2 – 1 Tablespoon of Fennel Pollen to pot and turn on high heat until boiling.  When at boil, turn heat down to low and cover for approximately 10-12 minutes.  Check the pot and if there is still water, return for another 2 minutes or until water is absorbed.  Once the water is absorbed, cover for an additional 5 minutes off heat.  Add a bit of EVOO and salt and pepper.  Sprinkle a bit more fennel pollen on the top to finish.

Do you have a holiday go-to dish?

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