Enjoy this simple nutritious Broccolini Salad with Quinoa & Papaya is a delicious, Asian inspired light meal. If you prepare the ingredients ahead this salad can be thrown together in minutes.
This Broccolini Salad with Quinoa & Papaya is a delicious, super quick and easy dish you can enjoy as a light lunch. I find a combination of fruit and vegetables in a salad makes for a more appealing dish. Especially if it includes both raw as well as cooked ingredients, as does this salad.
How to prepare the broccolini
Broccolini (also called tenderstem broccoli) is a wonderfully versatile vegetable, equally tasty in stews, as a side dish or in salads. It doesn’t require chopping and can be steamed or boiled whole in under 5 minutes (it cooks quicker than ordinary broccoli). It’s also a little sweeter than ordinary broccoli. Broccoli’s sweetness is in the stalk and broccolini has got stalk in abundance.
To cook the broccolini place it in a large pot with about 2 cm of water, cover and bring to the boil. Then simmer for 4-5 minutes, until the broccolini is tender but still firm and bright green. Drain off the water and leave to cool or dip in icy water to stop the cooking process.
You can store broccolini in the fridge for several hours until you are ready to make the salad.
Another recipe where I’ve used this vegetable is grilled chicken wrap with pineapple.
Prepping the quinoa for broccolini salad
I’ve always got quinoa in my cupboard as it’s such a fabulous handy ingredient, great in salads or as a side dish. Quinoa is fantastically nutritious which can be cooked ahead and once cooled, refrigerated for up to 3 days. This works especially well in salad recipes. I strongly recommend you cook it in advance as it will save you time when making the actual salad. And if you’ve got any leftover quinoa why not make this romanesco quinoa herb salad or quinoa beets salad with orange.
Asian inspired easy salad dressing
I used popular Asian flavours such as sesame oil, garlic and chilli, which work really well with all the ingredients in this salad. You can make this dressing in advance and refrigerate (overnight).
The dressing includes pomegranate molasses, but you could use maple or agave syrup or honey instead.
You can also serve this fruity salad with a drizzle of blueberry vinaigrette.
Although individual ingredients can be prepared ahead the salad itself should be served straight away.
If you enjoy fruit-and-veg salads you may also like this cantaloupe fruit salad with mozzarella.
Check out this collection of 15+ easy vegan salads for even more salad inspiration!
Broccolini Salad with Quinoa & Papaya
- 1 cup cooked quinoa you need about 1/3 cup raw
- 1 papaya peeled, deseeded, cut into wedges
- 100 g broccolini/tenderstem broccoli
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- For the dressing:
- 3 tablespoons vegetable olive oil I used rapeseed
- 2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1/2 garlic clove crushed
- 1/2 red chili pepper, finely chopped
- Fresh cilantro/coriander and toasted sesame seeds for garnish
- To prepare the broccolini place it in a large pot with about 2 cm of water, cover, bring to the boil, then lower the heat and cook for about 4-5 minutes (it should be tender but with some crunch and still bright green colour). Drain off the water, place the broccolini on a plate and allow to cool completely. You can also dip it in cold water to stop the cooking process.
- Combine the dressing ingredients, stir thoroughly and set aside.
- Once the quinoa and broccoli have cooled combine them with the papaya, season to taste and stir the mixture gently. Scatter freshly chopped coriander and toasted sesame seeds, add some of the dressing (reserve some so you can add more to individual portions if required) and enjoy!