Sweet and Crunchy Quinoa
1 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes, all the same size
3 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1/3 cup pine nuts
4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup dried cranberries
4 scallions, sliced
Preheat oven to 400ºF.
Place the quinoa into a small saucepan and add 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 15 minutes, or until the water is evaporated. Turn off the heat and let quinoa sit covered for at least one, hour or preferably, three hours.
Place the sweet potato cubes into a roasting pan and toss with 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil. Bake for 25 minutes, or until you can just pierce the cubes with a fork. Set aside.
Place the pine nuts into a small pan over medium heat until lightly toasted, stirring often. Set aside.
In a small bowl, place the remaining three tablespoons olive oil, vinegar, honey salt, pepper, cumin and cinnamon. Whisk well.
When the quinoa is dry, use a whisk to break apart the seeds and place into a large bowl. Add half the vinaigrette and mix with the whisk. Add more to taste, depending on how wet you like your quinoa; I add it all. Add the sweet potatoes, pine nuts, cranberries and scallions and mix gently.
Serve at room temperature.