I tried this amazing rose water quinoa salad at a party recently and could not stop eating it! I loved the plump, juicy raisins and the fresh taste of the vegetables. With every bite, I found myself trying to figure out what *that* ingredient was that made it taste so special. After taking a few guesses, the “secret ingredient” was finally revealed: rose water! I’d had desserts with rose water before but never had it in quinoa salad until now.
When I asked for the recipe, our family friend who had made the salad told me that the salad was just something she throws together without a recipe. She told me the “little bit of this, some that” version which was enough to help me figure out the recipe in my kitchen! It took a few attempts, but I was finally able to recreate the taste I remembered.
LEMON-OLIVE OIL DRESSING
To start making this unique salad, start by whisking together my easy, four ingredient lemon-olive oil vinaigrette. The four ingredients are:
- olive oil
I add the rose water at the end of the recipe, but it technically is part of the dressing. I don’t think I’d had anything with rose water and olive oil together before. It’s so nice!
After I have my dressing prepared, I cook the quinoa. I cook the quinoa in water, but if you want to add extra flavor, you can cook it in vegetable or chicken broth. After rinsing the quinoa, add it to boiling water or broth. Reduce heat and cook for about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and cover. After five minutes, grab a fork to fluff the quinoa and it should be all set.
In addition to the taste of the rose water, it’s all the fresh, finely chopped veggies that make this salad delicious. As you can tell from the pictures, all the vegetables are chopped into small pieces. This ensures that every bite ends up with bits of chopped onion, garlic, red and green pepper, and parsley!
Once all your vegetables are chopped, add the raisins, dressing and rose water. Finally, add the quinoa and mix well! You can serve it right away and cold or at room temperature. I prefer to let it sit in the fridge for at least an hour to allow the flavors to come together!
I have tried some really good quinoa salad recipes before, but have honestly never had one so packed with so many veggies or flavor as this incredibly flavorful quinoa salad! Whether you serve it alongside meat or a vegetarian option such as my Grilled or Fried Halloumi Cheese , you’ll love the bites full of veggies and amazing flavor!
Rose water is a common ingredient in Middle Eastern cuisine (most often used in desserts). It’s made by distilling fresh rose petals with water. If you haven’t tasted or made anything with it yet, I highly recommend it! It adds an exotic scent and a special, lovely taste to food. It’s pretty potent, so as good as it smells and tastes, use it sparingly!
You can find rose water in Middle Eastern stores. I’ve also been seeing it more in the international foods aisle of many grocery stores.
For more fresh, flavorful salads check out my Cranberry Feta Salad and this delicious Fresh Tomato, Pepper, and Onion Salad with Mint!
Rose Water Quinoa Salad
- 1 cup quinoa
- 2 cups water
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 red bell pepper finely chopped
- 1/2 green bell pepper finely chopped
- 1 small onion finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 cup chopped parsley
- 1/2 cup raisins any type of raisin works
- 2 1/2 tsp rose water
For the dressing:
- 4 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Whisk the ingredients for the dressing together and set aside.
- Rinse the quinoa then place it in a saucepan with the water and 1/4 tsp salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and cook 15 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed. Remove from heat and cover. After five minutes, fluff quinoa and set aside.
- To a large bowl, add the onion, red and green peppers, parsley, raisins and garlic. Add the dressing and mix well. To this, stir in 2 1/2 tsp rose water. Pour the quinoa into the vegetable mixture and mix very well. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour.
- Serve cold or at room temperature.
Leave a Reply