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Quinoa Salad

April 07, 2021
Photo: Cole SmothersPhoto: Cole Smothers

On my most recent visit to San Francisco, I ate a symphony of persimmons. At Chez Panisse, Alice Waters’ famed shrine to local food in Berkeley, the bright-orange fruit was shaved paper-thin over salads, pureed with sugar, eggs, and cream to make the perfect persimmon pudding, and served whole in a copper bowl to be easily plucked for a fresh and delicious dessert. At Hardwater, a Bourbon bar opened by chef Charles Phan of The Slanted Door fame, I ate crispy Brussels sprouts coated with a persimmon and mustard jam. While at Greens Restaurant, a wonderful vegetarian eatery started by Jewish chef and now cookbook author Deborah Madison, I ate the best quinoa salad I have ever tasted, served with—you got it—persimmons.

Featured in: A Tu B’Shevat Recipe That Brings the World Together

Great for: Tu B’Shevat

Holiday Quinoa Salad with Persimmons, Pistachios, and Pomegranates
Adapted from Greens Restaurant, San Francisco


For the Quinoa Salad

  • 1cup quinoa
  • Salt
  • ½small red onion, finely diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • ½tart, crisp apple such as a Granny Smith, diced (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1fuyu persimmon, diced (about 3/4 cup)
  • ¼cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1 ½teaspoons lemon zest
  • ¼cup chopped flat leaf parsley
  • ¼cup pistachios, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • ½head of romaine lettuce, chopped
  • ½head of red cabbage, cut into strips

For the Cinder Vinaigrette

  • 1tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1tablespoon apple juice
  • ¼teaspoon salt
  • 2tablespoons olive oil
Yield: 4-6 servings


To make the Quinoa Salad

  • Step 1

    Rinse quinoa 3 times in 1 cup cold water to remove the outer coating and drain. Bring the water to a boil in a small pot, add 1/4 teaspoon salt and the quinoa. Cover, lower the heat, and cook about 15 minutes, until tender. Set aside to cool and fluff with a fork.

  • Step 2

    Combine the quinoa and the onion, apple, persimmon, pomegranate seeds, lemon zest, parsley, and pistachios in a bowl and season to taste with more salt.

To make the Cinder Vinaigrette

  • Step 1

    Make the cider vinaigrette by combining the vinegar, apple juice, and salt in a small bowl and whisking in the oil. Toss the salad with the cider vinaigrette and pour over the chopped lettuce and cabbage before serving.