[donotprint] Can you imagine my delight when I spotted the plump looking figs in abundance before me just a couple of days pre Christmas? Overjoyed, jumping for joy, positively ecstatic…they all fall short of expressing the sheer delight!
The Happy Pear was of course the place they were spotted. I initially picked up six plump beauties which disappeared/were devoured by my good self overnight, leaving me back down on the morning of Christmas Eve to pick up round two! While they available you gotta make the most of them.
This time I managed to wait my patience and actually incorporate them in to something yummy, pretty and quite festive. It was the Christmas Eve meal that I sort of through together haphazardly before rushing out to get my hair chopped…a whole four inches, I feel like I have no hair left! For those of you on Instagram, I posted my first ever pic featuring my good self and my new hair on Christmas afternoon! My mum and dad got me an iPod touch so I’ve been officially “Appled” and now have a camera with me wherever I move, snapping happy.
My plan this holiday week was to do as little cooking as possible in an effort just to switch off a little bit from the pressure I sometimes put myself under/unquenchable appetite for experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen. It worked out quite well, the result being some easy full proof incredibly tasty dishes that turned out to be quite the delicious surprise when I sat down to dig in.
This pretty plateful was magical. Roasted sweet butternut squash, fluffy, chewy, nutty tricolour quinoa, fresh mint, two huge figs spread over the top and simple maple Dijon mustard dressing, finished off with some toasted flaked almonds. I warmed the figs in the oven for a couple of minutes before serving. They were gorgeous! A more subtle flavour than the black figs that appeared around the end of September, but just as irresistible to my fig loving palate.
The light pink flesh is a complete contrast to the vibrancy of the black figs bright red interior. The lighter flavour, softer nature of these beauties worked wonderfully in this dish; it somehow seems a more appropriate and appeasing taste sensation this time of year. The joys of seasonality!
It’s been an incredibly short relaxed week and now the weekend is upon us. I have an amazing plate of pancakes to share and fruit and nut cake that’s as easy as 1, 2, 3 over the next couple of days! Happy Friday folks! [/donotprint]
Warm Fig Squash & Quinoa Salad
Preparation Time – 5 minutes
Cooking Time – 30 minutes
- 2-3 large fresh figs
- 1/2 cup diced butternut squash
- 1/3 cup uncooked tricolour quinoa + 325ml (1 1/4 cup) water
- 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh mint
- 1 tbsp toasted flaked almonds
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Preheat oven to 180C (350F).
- Place squash on a non stick baking tray and bake for 30 minutes, tossing at least once.
- Cover quinoa with water, bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 15 minutes until all the water has been absorbed.
- Meanwhile whisk together dressing ingredients.
- Slice or dice figs in to four or six pieces depending on how large they are. Place in the oven for the last few minutes of time that the squash has to cook.
- Serve squash on top of the cooked quinoa, figs on top and drizzle over dressing. Sprinkle with mint and flaked almonds before digging in.