Gold Beet, Green Bean and Fennel Quinoa Salad

Beets and Beans are cooked, and the fennel is marinated raw.  For convenience the beets are steamed in this recipe, but they can also be oven roasted.  This is a salad can be a whole meal.

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.

Trim the roots from 1 bunch of beets (reserve the greens) and scrub them with a brush or sponge under running water.  Drop into the water.  Simmer the beets until they are tender.  Remove them from the water with a slotted spoon and run under cold water, then allow to cool.

Rinse 1 C. quinoa well, then drain.  Toast in a pot for 3 minutes, then add 1 1/4 C. water and bring to a boil, then turn the heat to low and cook until water is absorbed. Fluff with a fork, the cover again for 5 minutes.

Trim the leaves and stems off 1 fennel bulb.  Cut it in half from top to bottom and remove the tough core.  Use a mandoline or sharp knife to finely slice the bulb.  Chop the slices in half if they are too long.

In a bowl whisk together the juice and zest of 1/2 lemon, 2 T. olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper.  Add the fennel and toss to coat.  (Optional if you like anise flavor, add 1 T. chopped fennel leaves to the bowl).

Trim 1/2 lb. green beans.  Drop into the salted water you cooked the beets in.  When the water returns to a boil, drain the pot and rinse the beans with cold water.  Chop into 2-3 pieces.

When the beets are cool enough, peel them with your fingers.  Cut each beet in half, then cut into small dice.

Mince 1 small clove of garlic and combine with another 1/2 lemon’s worth of juice plus salt and pepper.  Whisk in 2 T. olive oil, then toss with the beets and green beans.

Combine the all the vegetables and the quinoa in a large bowl.  Taste and adjust the seasonings, adding crumbled goat or feta cheese if you like.

Serve with sauteed beet greens and/or kale.

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