Bacon-Quinoa-Snap Pea Salad with Honey-Lime Dressing

I mentioned I bought these beautiful, fat sugar snap peas at Costco the other day.  They are so sweet and perfect just by themselves in their raw state.  However, I wanted to do something different with them that wasn’t the same old stir-fry and dunking them into dip…not that I am opposed to those options.

I came across this recipe from Food and Wine and then I saw this recipe over at For the Love of Cooking. I did a little combining of the recipes and added a bunch of other ingredients.  This resulted in a very yummy, very nicely-textured salad….the perfect marriage of two unrelated ideas.  I love when that happens.

It’s savory, it’s sweet, it’s crunchy….overall it turned out to be a real winner and something very different and unexpected.  I think you will like it.

Bacon-Quinoa-Snap Pea Salad with Honey-Lime Dressing
Serves 4-5

Salad:
4 strips of thick-cut smoked bacon, diced
1/2 pound sugar snap peas
1-1/2 cups quinoa, dry
2 cups chicken stock or broth
1/3 cup pepitas
2 teaspoons black sesame seeds
1/2 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Dressing:
Juice of 1 lime
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon honey
2 cloves of garlic, crushed through garlic press
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Over medium heat, fry bacon until crisp. Drain on paper towels and set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil.  Blanch peas for one minute in water.  Remove and immediately plunge into a bowl of ice water.  This will stop the cooking process and allow the peas to keep their beautiful green color.  Remove from ice water after two minutes, and place peas on paper towels to dry. Cut the peas into 1″ pieces.

In another pot, bring 2 cups chicken stock or broth to a boil.  Add quinoa and stir.  Cover and cook over low heat until all the stock has evaporated and the quinoa is tender, about 15 minutes.  Uncover and fluff the quinoa, then transfer to another bowl so it can cool to room temperature.

In a small nonstick pan, add pepitas and sesame seeds.  Cook over low heat to roast them until fragrant, about 3-5 minutes.  Turn off heat and add stir in oil and salt.  Set aside.

In another bowl, combine all dressing ingredients, whisk to combine.

Here is my ever-present kitchen assistant.  She is not allowed in the “kitchen cooking” area.  However, she has decided if she slides on her side or belly crawls into the “no-dog” zone, somehow this voids the rule.  She hopes ANYTHING will fall to the ground so she can gobble up a little taste, even if it’s an onion.

In a large bowl, add the peas to the quinoa, along with the pepita mixture.  Give the dressing one more stir and add to the quinoa.  Mix to combine.  Sprinkle bacon over the top. 

Serve at room temperature or slightly chilled.

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19 Comments

  1. Susan 1

    Bought a big bag of quinoa a while ago and have been looking for good ways to use it … this looks a ‘keeper’ … thanks!

  2. Melinda 2

    This sounds really good to me. I have been looking for a good salad to bring to work and this sounds like the one. The garlic might drive a few people away from me though. Oh well!
    I sure love the picture of your ‘creeping to the kitchen’ dog! My little dog used to do the same thing. She was my most faithful cooking companion and stray bits cleaner upper. She passed away a year and a half ago, and I miss her so!
    Thank you so much for sharing all the recipes that you do. I love to see what you are cooking and follow you on my Facebook page, so don’t always comment. You work very hard to keep your blog going! I enjoy it very much.

  3. Noble Pig 3

    You are so nice! Thanks!

  4. Gigi 4

    Great recipe…love quinoa!

    And I know you were being tongue-in-cheeck, but onions are toxic to dogs…just an FYI for those who may not be aware!

  5. Noble Pig 5

    I know, but she dive bombs for the tiniest piece that falls on the floor, there is no stopping her.

  6. Barbie with a T 6

    This has to be super tasty, and it does make a beautiful presentation. If I can fine quinoa in this podunk town, I will get some and use it for this recipe.

  7. Noble Pig 7

    It can’t be anymore podunk than where I live!!

  8. Kate 8

    Hi, Cathy. Love that this is gluten free! I’m on a no-wheat thing and feel good. Truly adding this to my list of recipes.

  9. bacon? i’m IN! btw, the pic with the spilled quinoa? GORGEOUS.

  10. My dog creeps into my space in the kitchen waiting for food to be dropped too. He’d be all over the bacon! I love this quinoa salad :)

  11. Noble Pig 11

    Hi Kate! How are you? Glad you liked it!!!

  12. Noble Pig 13

    That’s when this dog made her side crawls in…once that bacon was underway, she couldn’t help herself.

  13. claire 14

    OH this looks absolutely delicious!! I love the honey lime dressing!

  14. We’re on the same wavelength – I’m posting a quinoa dish in a few days! :) This looks really tasty, and I’m loving your kitchen assistant!

  15. Carole Resnick 16

    My Velcro, who passed away of caner on February 7, 2012, used to do the same thing. Belly crawl into the forbidden cooking zone and praying that I wouldn’t notice.

  16. sara 17

    I made this for dinner tonight and my family and friends loved it! Such an excllent recipie, something that I wouldn’t have come up with on my own and it was so tasty, thanks! FYI I also added some finely choped bok choy I was looking to use up, and it went so nicely :)

  17. Monique Farber 18

    Made this salad last week and it was soo delicious!! I was glad there were leftovers, but the salad was quite dry the next day. I quickly made up a small batch of the dressing and that made it much better. Next time I make it I’m adding in some mango for a nice sweet crunch!! Thanx a bunch for my new fav summer salad!!

  18. I have tried this and LOVE it! Just got my first batch of peas from the garden and am going to post this recipe on my blog http://www.homeandgardenwelcome.wordpress.com along with your photo (please and thank you). I will credit your blog. Thanks for the great recipe!

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