Southwest Quinoa and Kale Salad with NM Red Chile Vinaigrette

Still, it remains to be seen if we make our (usual) yearly trek to Northern New Mexico.

Eliot's Eats

Moon over Inn on Alameda, December 2014

So, I am still wistfully thinking about our past trips and posting a few pictures as I revisit our past journeys.

Eliot's Eats

El Santuario de Chimayó on Christmas Day, 2011

This salad is inspired by the leftover NM dried chiles from my pantry.   It is also inspired by a Starbucks salad that I had to pick up for lunch last week.


It was pretty tasty, but I thought I could improve on it.

NM Red Chile Vinaigrette

2 dried New Mexican chiles, mild
2 c. boiling water
¼ teaspoon cumin
1/4 cup cilantro leaves
1/2 jalapeño, preferably red, chopped
1 T. Finely chopped shallot
1 clove minced  garlic
6 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons canola oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Immerse the chiles in boiling water and let stand for thirty minutes.  After 30 minutes, remove seeds and stem and rinse.   Give them a rough chop.


I used two smallish ones.


Place all ingredients but the oil in a blender.   Process until ingredients are pureed.   Then, slowly add oil with blender running until emulsified.  Taste and season with salt and pepper.  Set aside or refrigerate until ready to use.

This recipe makes about 1 cup of dressing and it will keep for about a week in the refrigerator.   Now for the salad proper.

Eliot's Eats

Southwest Quinoa and Kale Salad

1 c. quinoa
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 c. frozen corn, thawed
1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped fine
1 1/2 T.  red-wine vinegar
salt and pepper
1/2 c. jicama, cut into matchsticks
1/2 t. chili powder
5 oz. baby kale mix
1/8 c. feta

Cook quinoa according to directions.

While quinoa is cooking, in a small bowl toss beans, corn, and jalapeños with vinegar and salt and pepper to taste.

Transfer quinoa to a large bowl and cool. Add beans, corn, and jalapeño mixture and toss well.

In a separate small bowl, toss the jicama sticks with the chili powder to coat.

Arrange kale mix on individual serving plates and place a scoop of the quinoa mixture on top.  Drizzle with the NM Red Chile Vinaigrette (see above).   Garnish with the jicama and feta.  Serve.


I have to say that this salad was much more delicious than the $6 one I bought at Starbuck’s.

Eliot's Eats

Tossed up!


Feel free to add sliced grilled chicken if you so desire.  This recipe serves 4-6.   To stretch the kale , just add more of the quinoa and bean mixture.  If you are only serving two, the great thing about the quinoa mixture is that you can freeze it in individual serving containers.  If you take your lunch, this is great.  (I can attest to this AND it is better than Starbuck’s!)  The vinaigrette was based on one found here.

I am also linking this recipe up with Deb’s (Kahakai Kitchen) Souper Sunday.

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