Quinoa Salad with Sun Dried Tomatoes & Feta Cheese

This Quinoa Salad with Sun Dried Tomatoes and Feta Cheese from Bolivia is a blend of pure deliciousness. This superfood makes an awesome base to a salad topped with a tangy lemon vinaigrette. It is healthy and perfect as either a side dish or a main course!

When I started this Bolivian cooking adventure, I had no idea that one of my favorite salad toppings came directly from the grounds of Bolivia! Both Bolivia and Peru are hubs for the production of quinoa, but Bolivia is the quinoa queen above all else.

Quinoa As a Superfood

Quinoa is a superfood. Actually, it’s THE superfood. NASA even said in 1993 that “while no single food can supply all of the essential life-sustaining nutrients, quinoa comes as close as any other in the plant or animal kingdom” (page 7).

One cup of cooked quinoa contains about 8.1 grams of protein, 5.2 grams of fiber, 30% of the daily recommended magnesium and manganese and a significant portion of daily copper, phosphorus, zinc, and potassium. Plus it has no cholesterol and is gluten free (perfect for those with gluten intolerances!). With these stats, it’s no wonder that between 1992-2010, the production of quinoa in Bolivia almost doubled (according to FAO.org).

So Bolivia produces a lot of quinoa… but is it good for their economy to do so? This article from Investopedia examines that question in more detail (hint: the article says no).

Quinoa Salad from Bolivia

Bolivian Quinoa Salad

So when I got to Bolivia, I knew that I had to make a recipe with quinoa… but what? Just a side dish of quinoa seemed boring to me, soo I made a decision to make a Bolivian Quinoa Salad. BOY OH BOY WAS THAT A GREAT IDEA.

I made this recipe for a family gathering, and it was a pure HIT. My aunties couldn’t stop talking about how healthy and delicious this salad was. And we were all pleased with how awesome the feta cheese tasted with the sun dried tomatoes.

Easy Peasy Bolivian Quinoa Salad

The best part is that this quinoa salad comes together in under 30 minutes– including cooking the quinoa! If you have leftover quinoa, it will be even faster, coming together in 5-10 minutes, depending on how fast you can chop. This recipe is perfect as a side dish to a steak, a main course on a picnic, or a perfect dish to pass at a potluck.

Whichever way you choose to enjoy it, let me know! Share a photo of your quinoa salad with the hashtag #TheForeignFork or tag @TheForeignFork on Facebook or Instagram. If you liked this recipe, try this Caribbean Seafood Salad from Antigua and Barbuda or this Mangal Salad with Roasted Vegetables and Slivered Almonds from Azerbaijan. As always, leave a comment to let me know what you think! I can’t wait for you to try this!

Quinoa Salad with Sun Dried Tomatoes and Feta Cheese

This Quinoa Salad with Sun Dried Tomatoes and Feta Cheese from Bolivia is a blend of pure deliciousness. This superfood makes an awesome base to a salad topped with a tangy lemon vinaigrette. It is healthy and perfect as either a side dish or a main course!

Course Appetizer, Main Course, Salad
Cuisine Bolivian
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Servings 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • ¼ cup parsley chopped
  • ½ red onion finely diced
  • 1 cup feta cheese
  • 1 8.5 oz jar California Sun Dry Brand julienne-cut sun dried tomatoes drained, rinsed, and dried
  • 1 15 oz can chickpeas drained and rinsed
  • 1 ½ Avocado pitted and cubed

Dressing

  • cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½-1 tsp sea salt depending on taste

Instructions

  1. Cook the quinoa according to the directions on the package. Allow to cool.

  2. Combine the dressing ingredients in a separate bowl or jar.

  3. Mix quinoa with the rest of the salad ingredients. Pour dressing over the top.

  4. Serve cold or room temperature! Enjoy!

  5. Leave a comment on this post telling me what you think.

Ema Datschi (Peppers and Cheese) from Bhutan

Ema Datschi from Bhutan

Ema Datschi from Bhutan is a mixture of chili peppers and cheese that marks every single meal in Bhutan. This version is a delicious and easy recipe to make with ingredients from your local grocery store!

Of all foods in Bhutan, I think most Bhutanese would agree that Ema Datschi reigns supreme. Ema Datschi is a total staple in Bhutan. Not only is it served at most restaurants, it’s served at most meals. In every house, for almost every meal, Ema Datschi is a favorite. Even if it’s not a main dish in the meal, it’s almost always served as an appetizer.

A Vegetarian Meal

As you may know from my Bhutan Introduction, many of the Bhutanese are vegetarians. Bhutan is a Buddhist country, so killing of any kind is strictly forbidden. If any inhabitants of Bhutan ever want to eat meat, it needs to be imported to the country from India. For this reason, vegetarian recipes are very common in Bhutan, and this is a great one!

A bowl of ema datschi from bhutan

The Cheese Blend

Now, of course, this recipe is meant to be made with yak cheese. However, I wasn’t able to find yak cheese (are you sick of hearing this yet? I’ve said it for every Bhutanese recipe so far), so I made my own cheese blend to add to my Ema Datschi. I found that a mix of feta, farmer’s cheese, and sharp cheddar was the perfect blend for this recipe. Of course, if you have access to yak cheese, that would be the most authentic way to make this recipe.

Ema Datschi

Variations of Ema Datschi

All recipes for Ema Datschi are a little different from one another. Some are more watery or soupy, some seem more like peppers smothered in melted cheese. This is a great mix in the middle, though the cheese doesn’t completely melt into the water. Farmer’s cheese tends to not melt into water, so the mixture ends up being more watery. I love it that way!

If you loved this recipe, make sure to post a picture of it on Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #TheForeignFork and tag @TheForeignFork. You can also leave a comment on this post! Also make sure to check out this recipe for Pigeon Peas and Rice from The Bahamas and this Mangal (Roasted Vegetable) Salad from Azerbaijan.

Ema Datschi (Bhutan)

Ema Datschi from Bhutan is a mixture of chili peppers and cheese that marks every single meal in Bhutan. This version is a delicious and easy recipe to make with ingredients from your local grocery store!

Course Appetizer, Main Course, Soup
Cuisine Bhutan
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 red bell pepper cut into thin strips
  • 1 poblano pepper cut into thin strips
  • 2 jalapenos cut into thin strips
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic
  • 1 sweet onion sliced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 oz feta cheese
  • 4 oz farmers cheese
  • 2 oz sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 sliced tomato
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Wash the chili peppers, remove the seeds, and cut them into very thin, horizontal strips (about 1/4 of an inch thick). Wash the tomato, cut in half, and the cut into thin, half-moon slices.

  2. Set a pan on the stove and fill it with ½ cup of water. Now add all of the chopped peppers, chopped garlic, sliced onion, salt, and butter into the pan.
  3. Cover the pot and boil it on low flame for about 20 minutes.
  4. Stir in cheese and allow it to melt.
  5. Enjoy plain in a bowl or served over red rice.


Qutab (Azerbaijan): A Savory, Herb-Filled Crepe

Stack of Qutab crepes

Qutab is a savory crepe from Azerbaijan. The only qualifier to this dish is that the crepe must be filled with herbs. After that, creativity is welcome! Try different meats, cheeses, herbs, or spreads and discover your favorite Qutab combination.

Lookin’ for a little snack? A great appetizer? A light lunch that pairs perfectly with delicious soup? Look no further, my (wo)man! I gotchu covered right here.

These little snackers remind me of crepes, but crunchier. The batter is made of all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, oil and boiling water. It crisps up nicely to make a deliciously textured crust.

Overhead view of qutab on wooden board

Making the Crepe

When making the pancake portion of the Qutab, use a medium pan, and make sure to re-grease it with each new circle of dough added. Place the dough in the pan, and immediately begin filling the crepe with your desired filling. Leave the crepe to cook for about 30 seconds to one minute, until it starts to brown. Using a rubber spatula, fold the dough over to create a half moon shape. Continue cooking the Qutab until both outer sides have browned.

Stack of Qutab with herbs and yogurt dip

Filling Your Qutab

The freedom is yours from there! As long as the Qutab are filled with herbs, they’re considered a traditional Azerbaijani recipe.

I chose to fill my Qutab with mint, dill, cilantro, and chives, but you can also choose from sage, oregano, or any other herbs that catch your eye. Be sure to use a base of spinach! If you’d like meat in your crepe, ground lamb makes a great choice. Mix in paneer or feta for a cheesy addition, or add spreads to the cooked crepe, like pumpkin or molasses.

Get creative in the kitchen and see where it takes you! If you come up with a mind-blowing combo, share it with me!! If you liked this Qutab, I’m sure you’ll also live this Boolawnee from Afghanistan or this Zucchini Slice from Australia!

Qutab (Azerbaijan)

Qutab is a savory crepe from Azerbaijan. The only qualifier to this dish is that the crepe must be filled with herbs. After that, creativity is welcome! Try different meats, cheeses, herbs, or spreads and discover your favorite Qutab combination.

Ingredients

Crepe Dough

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup wheat flour
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1.5-2 cups boiling water as needed

Filling

  • 2 cups spinach 1 bunch
  • ½ cup feta
  • 3 stalks chives
  • 2 tbsp mint
  • 2 tbsp dill
  • 1 tbsp Lemon juice
  • ¼ white onion
  • 2 tbsp cilantro
  • 2 tbsp yogurt
  • ¼-½ cup pumpkin depending on preference
  • 1/4 cup onion chopped

Instructions

Make the Dough

  1. Mix both types of flour together and add the salt. 

  2. Boil the water on the stove. Slowly pour the water into flour until you have a ball of dough that is wet and holds itself together but is not sticky. 

  3. Allow the dough to cool, then add the oil and knead the dough until soft. Cover and leave to rest for about half an hour.

Filling and Assembly

  1. In a medium pan, sauté the chopped onion and the chives together. 

  2. Once translucent, add the spinach and the lemon juice and sauté until wilted. Remove from the heat and add the rest of the filling ingredients except for the pumpkin. Stir to combine.

  3. Separate dough into quarters. Flour a surface and use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a circle, flouring as necessary. 

  4. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Drizzle the skillet with oil and lay the circle of dough on the skillet. 

  5. Spread pumpkin puree on one half of the dough and then layer 2 tbsp of filling on the dough. Fold the dough in half and press the edges together. 

  6. Cook until the dough becomes crispy and browned, then flip and cook the other side. Repeat until ingredients are gone. 

  7. Serve with plain yogurt as a dipping sauce on the side.

Recipe Notes

Recipe copyright The Foreign Fork. For educational or personal use only.