Plated – Summer quinoa bowl with burrata, candied almonds and arugula

This is my second and final Plated meal. All I have to say is burrata is the BOMB! It’s like mozzarella’s cool cousin who is way cooler that mozzarella. I’m definitely going to start incorporating it into my cooking.

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Of the two Plated meals I tried, this is most similar to something I would choose to cook without a meal service. I love veggie bowls with some sort of grain and some sort of sauce because they are easy to put together, have a lot of fiber and taste amazing. The flavors go really well together – the sweet heat of the almonds, the crunchy freshness of the snap peas, the tangy vinegar and then the cheeeese. So good. I found myself wanting more apple cider vinegar, because vinegar is probably my favorite flavor group and I love when I can really taste it!

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This meal was more involved than the salmon burgers, but still very easy. My main tip I would give would be to make sure that you really caramelize the maple syrup on the almonds because they will be too sticky otherwise. And don’t put them on a plate! Put them on some wax paper and then spread them out with a fork. I just dumped mine on a plate and they clumped together, welding themselves to the plate. I had to pry them off when a fork, sending one flying right into my eye. I should have known better since I used to help my Mom candy pecans every Christmas. The good news is, if you do weld hot maple syrup onto your plate, just run hot water over it for a little bit and it will dissolve completely.

I would definitely make this meal again and add more vinegar.

Summer quinoa bowl with burrata, candied almonds and arugula

Serves: 4

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes 

1/2 cup roasted salted almonds
5 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1 1/3 cup red quinoa
1 1/4 pounds summer squash, cut into bit sized pieces
2 shallots
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar (or more to taste!)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tbsp dijon mustard
12 ounces sugar snap peas
1 cup peas
6 ounces baby arugula (about two big handfuls)
8 ounces burrata

Candy the almonds by combining them with 4 tablespoons of maple syrup, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper in a skillet over medium heat. Stir continuously for about 2-3 minutes until the maple syrup is no longer liquidy. Transfer to a layer of wax paper and spread evenly.

Combine the quinoa, 2 2/3 cups water and salt in a pot, bring to a boil, cover and simmer over medium low, about 15 minutes.

Mince the shallot and add to a bowl. Add the apple cider vinegar, dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, salt and pepper. Whisk in the olive oil until blended.

Cook the squash in a skillet with some olive oil, salt and pepper, about 5 minutes. Add the snap peas and cook for about 2 minutes. Add the peas, cook for about 1-2 more minutes. Remove from the heat and mix in the cooked quinoa until well combined. Add the arugula, quinoa and other vegetables to a bowl, add the dressing and toss to coat. Roughly chop the almonds.

Serve in a bowl and top with the burrata and almonds.

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