Autumn Vegetable & Red Quinoa Salad with Zahtar Dressing
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This plant based salad, can be prepared well in advance of eating and tastes even better the next day. The roasting of the cauliflower and squash in this recipe enhances and sweetens their flavor, whilst the Zahtar based topping lends a Middle Eastern slant.
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Serves: 6-8 as a side
  • 1 medium blue kabocha squash, skin left on, seeded and sliced into crescent shapes
  • 1 head of cauliflower, broken into florets
  • 1 Tbs coconut oil, divided
  • ½ cup red quinoa, preferably soaked for at least 1 hour prior to use
  • 2 Tbs toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 6 leaves of dinosaur kale, stems removed, thin chiffonade
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ---
  • 6 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbs red wine vinegar
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 tsp Zahtar blend (see notes), divided
  1. Pre-heat oven to 220° C / 425° F.
  2. Toss the squash pieces in ½ Tbs coconut oil and roast on a parchment lined baking try in the oven for 30-40 minutes, until tender. Remove and cool, then chop into bite-sized pieces (stopping to remove the skin if you find the excess fibre in the skin indigestible).
  3. Turn the oven down to 200° C / 400° F. Toss the cauliflower in the remaining coconut oil and roast for 15 minutes, or until the florets start to char. Remove and cool.
  4. Meanwhile drain and rinse the soaked quinoa, then cook by placing in a saucepan with 1 & ¼ cups of water and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cook covered for 10-15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa is tender. Removed to a sheet pan to cool, and fluff out the grains.
  5. Whilst the vegetables cool, make up the dressing. Whisk together the oil and vinegar with the garlic, salt and 1 tsp of the Zahtar blend until emulsified.
  6. To assemble the salad - in a large bowl toss the quinoa with the squash, cauliflower, kale, pumpkin seeds (reserving a few for decoration) and pour over the dressing. Make sure the vegetables are well coated – this will help the raw kale break down a little. Season to taste.
  7. Sprinkle the finished salad with the remaining tsp of Zahtar blend and pumpkin seed.
  8. Can be eaten warm or cold and it tastes even better the next day!
Recipe by Natural Kitchen Adventures at