Recipe for red quinoa salad with spicy lime vinaigrette

Credit: Jillian Bernardini for the boston globe

Serves 4

Turn a simple quinoa salad into a main dish by adding roasted squash and white beans, then tossing the bowl with a lively, spicy lime vinaigrette. The salad will have a little heft and offer a healthful, meatless
alternative for a weeknight meal.

VINAIGRETTE

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1 shallot, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 small jalapeno, seeded, finely chopped
Grated rind of ½ lime
Juice of 2 limes
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Salt and black pepper, to taste
½ teaspoon crushed red
pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons canola oil

1. In small bowl, combine the shallot, garlic, jalapeno, lime rind and juice, lemon juice, salt, black pepper, and red pepper.

2. Gradually whisk in the olive and canola oils in a slow steady stream. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and black pepper, if you like.

SALAD

½ cup pepitas (toasted pumpkin seeds)
½ teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
pounds peeled, seeded butternut squash, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 tablespoon canola oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 cup red quinoa
2 cups water
1 can (15 ounces) white beans, drained
¼ cup chopped fresh
cilantro

1. Set the oven at 350 degrees.

2. On a rimmed baking sheet, sprinkle the pepitas with olive oil and paprika. Stir well. Spread the pepitas in one layer. Toast in oven for 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Tip the pepitas into a bowl; cool.

3. Turn the oven temperature up to 400 degrees. Wipe off the baking sheet. Add the butternut squash, canola oil, salt, and pepper. Toss well. Roast for 30 to 35 minutes, turning the squash half way through, or until it caramelizes; cool.

4. In a saucepan over medium heat, toast the quinoa, stirring often, for 2 minutes, or until the grains are aromatic. Add the water and a pinch of salt. Stir well and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, cover the pan, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until quinoa is tender. Transfer to a large bowl and fluff with a fork.

5. Add the squash, beans, half of the pepitas, and half the cilantro to the quinoa. Sprinkle with dressing and toss gently. Taste for seasoning, and add more salt and pepper, if you like. Garnish with remaining pepitas and cilantro. Jillian Bernardini

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