Fast Recipes

Chicken salad with asparagus and quinoa

If you've got the time, toast the quinoa in a little grapeseed oil until it's golden brown before adding the water - it adds a great nutty flavour that works well with the asparagus.

By Max Adey
  • Serves 4
  • 15 mins preparation
  • 15 mins cooking
Chicken salad with asparagus and quinoa

If you've got the time, toast the quinoa in a little grapeseed oil until it's golden brown before adding the water - it adds a great nutty flavour that works well with the asparagus. You'll want to use this method every time you cook quinoa.

Ingredients

  • 200 gm quinoa, rinsed (1 cup)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 6 skinless chicken thigh fillets
  • 2 bunches asparagus, trimmed, cut into 1cm pieces
  • 2 salad onions, thinly sliced on a mandolin
  • 3 cups watercress sprigs (firmly packed)
  • 1 cup mint (firmly packed)
Tarragon-buttermilk dressing
  • 125 ml buttermilk (½ cup)
  • 60 gm mayonnaise
  • 35 ml lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped French tarragon
  • 1 small garlic clove, crushed

Method

  • 1
    Preheat oven to 220°C. Bring quinoa and 300ml water to the boil in a saucepan, then cover, reduce heat to low and cook until water is absorbed and quinoa is cooked (10-12 minutes). Spread on a large tray to cool.
  • 2
    Meanwhile, heat oil in a large frying pan over high heat and fry chicken, turning once, until golden brown (5-6 minutes). Transfer to a baking tray lined with baking paper and roast until just cooked through (4-6 minutes). Rest for 5 minutes, then shred.
  • 3
    Blanch asparagus until bright green (30 seconds to 1 minute), refresh and drain, then combine in a large bowl with quinoa, chicken, salad onion, watercress and mint.
  • 4
    For tarragon-buttermilk dressing, whisk ingredients in a small bowl to combine and season to taste. Drizzle over salad to taste, toss to combine and serve.