Another salad this week, though as simple as my Bacon & Kale salad with blue cheese dressing is, this Mediterranean Lamb Salad with Quinoa is a little more complicated. Now, when I say complicated, I don’t mean difficult. Simply that there are many ingredients that require different ways of preparation – fear not, it’s all incredibly easy no matter how daunting it may appear.
Firstly though, I want to share with you my appreciation of salad! I have been a fan of salads for as long as I can remember. It was always my task as a teen to prepare them for our regular large gatherings and barbecues. I would always spend the time to ensure each salad was perfectly balanced, and my efforts were always appreciated.
Now, this was back in the 90’s mind you, before the time of food blogs. Back then, my access to new, exciting recipes was mainly limited to cheap magazines. However, at the time salads were hardly sexy and these recipe collections rarely offered anything new of interesting. So of course, when I talk about my salads I mean nothing more complicated than an Australian garden salad. Think cheese, tomato, lettuce, onion, carrots and celery. Hardly exciting!
However these days, thanks to the absolute abundance of recipes online, my salads are anything and everything but boring.
When it comes to salad, I could quite easily eat these every day! That’s because of the vast variety of salads available. From cold salads through to hot salads, there is one for every occasion, every season, and all produce. My Mediterranean Lamb Salad with Quinoa is an incredibly versatile recipe that is suitable for every occasion and season!
Let’s talk Ingredients…
With slow-cooked, caramelised onions, salted tomatoes, a deliciously minty yoghurt dressing, and salty feta paired with the sweetness of the lamb, this gorgeous Mediterranean salad has something for everyone.
Lamb: I used diced lamb shoulder in this recipe, however, feel free to use whichever cut you wish. My preference is to dice the lamb into 1cm portions as this cooks faster and is easier to toss through the salad.
Tomatoes: Don’t be tempted to skip salting the tomatoes or you may end up with a soggy salad. Salting tomatoes held draw out excess water as well as enhancing their naturally rich flavour.
Onions: Red onions are much sweeter than their brown counterparts and are perfect for caramelisation. This is a long process, but patience leads to a wonderful, deeply flavoured strips on onion that really bring this salad to life.
Quinoa: This ancient grain comes in many varieties, however, I have used the basic white variety for this recipe. Be careful not to drown the quinoa during the cooking process as this can create a stodgy, rather than fluffy, grain.
Greek Yoghurt: Greek Yoghurt has a much tarter flavour than mere plain yoghurt, and this is essential for a salad dressing as it plays wonderfully with the mint and parsley. Feel free to use low-fat or no-fat Greek yoghurt, however, I would advise against simply plain styled yoghurt.
Feta Cheese: This is available at most supermarkets, however, should it not be available than any Greek-style salad cheese is perfectly suitable.
Pomegranate Seeds: These darling red jewels add bursts of flavour throughout this salad. However, due to their seasonal nature, should these be unavailable you can simply skip these from your salad.
Again, don’t let the ingredient, nor the instruction list intimidate you. It’s all incredibly simple, incredibly easy, and the payoff is incredibly worthwhile.
Mediterranean Lamb Salad with Quinoa
- 300g lamb, diced
- 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 250g baby tomatoes, diced
- 1 cucumber, diced
- 1 large red onion, sliced
- 1 tsp rapeseed oil
- 1 tsp butter
- 100g Quinoa
- 200ml chicken stock
- 100g natural Greek yoghurt
- 1/4 tsp celery salt
- 1/4 cup mint, fresh
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, fresh
- 50g Feta, crumbled
- 50g pomegranate seeds
- Marinate the lamb in the oil, cumin, oregano and lemon juice with a pinch of salt, for at least 30 minutes.
- Heat a skillet over low-medium heat and add cook the lamb for 15-20 minutes, or until charred.
- Remove from heat and set aside
- Set the tomatoes and cucumber in a sieve and mix through 1 tsp sea salt. Set aside to soak for one hour.
- Heat oil over low heat and melt the butter into the oil. Add the onions to the oil and add a pinch of salt. Cook over low heat for one hour, or until caramlised.
- Rinse quinoa thoroughly under cold water until the water runs clear.
- Bring chicken stock to boil over high heat. Add quinoa, cover and reduce heat to low.
- Simmer for 20 minutes or until all stock has been absorbed. Remove from heat and let sit, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
- Combine all dressing ingredients in a jug and blitz until well combined.
Bringing it together!
- Transfer tomatoes, cucumbers, and quinoa to a salad bowl and toss together. Divide between 4 salad bowls.
- Mix the onions through the lamb, then divide between the salad bowls.
- Crumble the feta over the lamb and salad, sprinkle with pomegranate seeds, and then drizzle over salad dressing.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 465Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 90mgSodium: 394mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 2gSugar: 16gProtein: 26g
Please note, this nutrition information is to be used as a guide only. Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.