Are we really only a few short weeks away from the fall equinox? I’d prefer to stay in a state of perpetual summertime, it’s my favorite time of the year. The thought of going to the farmer’s market and not having a selection of juice heirloom tomatoes to choose from is a tad bit depressing, but I’m embracing the last bit of the season (especially since California lends me extra time) and using up my summer bounty with this incredible grilled salad inspired by a recipe from the Simple Veganista.
Photo Credit: Simple Veganista
1 cup dried quinoa
2 T. olive oil
2 peaches (ripe but firm)
2 organic corn on the cob
2 medium zucchini
handful cherry tomatoes (for grill)
1-2 heirloom tomatoes, sliced lengthwise
1 cup cooked garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup baby arugula
¼ cup marcona almonds (broken into pieces)
sea salt and cracked black pepper
Lemon Basil Dressing:
1/3 cup basil leaves
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
zest and juice of 1 lemon
2 tsp. rice wine vinegar
1 clove garlic
sea salt and pepper
Cook quinoa according to package directions.
Make the salad dressing by adding all the ingredients to blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Make this before preparing other ingredients and set aside to allow flavors to meld.
Prep your grill by pre-heating. Cut peaches into eighths, cutting along the seam all the way around and slicing off the pit. Use a mandolin to thinly slice zucchini, or cut into ½ inch thick circles. De-husk fresh corn on the cob. Brush your vegetables with olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt.
Place corn on the grill. Then add the zucchini and peaches cut side down. The last two should grill up fairly quickly, about 3 – 5 minutes. I brush cherry tomatoes with olive oil and grill for the last minute or two.
Once the corn is grilled and cooled, cut the off the cob. Hold by its top horizontally in the center, use a knife to gently but firmly cut the corn from the cob from top to bottom (I place mine on large cutting board.
Add quinoa to a large mixing bowl, along with the peaches, corn, zucchini, cherry tomatoes, chickpeas, and arugula. Drizzle in 4-5 tablespoons of the dressing, then toss to combine. Add additional dressing if desired, then mix again. Layer slices of heirloom tomatoes on the bottom of a serving dish, then heap the salad over the top. Add a sprinkle of salt & fresh cracked pepper to taste and top with almonds.
Serve at room temperature or chilled.