Warm Grain Salad with Walnuts, Greens and Dried Cherries

Warm Grain Salad with Walnuts, Greens and Dried Cherries

I went to Sweet Green in King of Prussia Mall once – seems like years ago. Obviously it was pre-Covid. I ordered a salad with grains in it and it was really nice. I mean, I love salads, but sometimes they don’t fill you up they way they’re supposed to in theory. Add some grains, though, and it ups the ante.

I’ve been cooking with millet lately because Rich can eat it. Quinoa would be the exact same (cooks the same and tastes similarly) and since it’s probably easier to find, I listed it below. This “salad” is dairy and gluten free, and fairly basic but gorgeously healthy. It’s literally like a dream salad of micronutrients. Would be a great “all your sides in one” at dinner with some grilled meat or fish OR you could chopped chicken right to the salad when you’re mixing it all together. Just another reason to buy a rotisserie chicken near the checkout! I will leave this be on here, as is, but I think it would be just PERFECTION with the addition of crumbled goat cheese.

Warm Grain Salad with Walnuts, Greens and Dried Cherries

Serves 6

1/2 c. walnuts, roughly chopped

1 c. millet or quinoa (rinse if using quinoa)

2 c. water

3/4 tsp. kosher salt, divided

1/2 c. dried cherries

1/2 c. olive oil

1/4 c. champagne vinegar

1 tbsp. dijon mustard

1 tbsp. honey

1/2 a red onion, thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 (5 oz) container baby spinach and kale, sliced (about five cups)

1/4 tsp. black pepper

Optional add-ins – 1 c. crumbled goat cheese, 2 c. chopped, cooked chicken breast

  1. Toast walnuts in a dry skillet over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, until fragrant (about five minutes). Remove from heat.
  2. Toast millet or quinoa in dry saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally until it smells nutty. Add water and 1/4 tsp. of the salt and increase heat to high. Cover. When boiling, reduce to simmer. Cook, covered, about 20 minutes or until water is absorbed. Off heat, remove lid, add cherries, and cover. Let sit five minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, whisk olive oil, vinegar, dijon mustard, honey in a large bowl until well blended. Add onion and garlic and stir to combine. Let sit five minutes.
  4. Add greens, grains (and cherries), walnuts and remaining 1/2 tsp. salt along with 1/4 tsp. black pepper. Stir well to combine. Serve.
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