Quinoa, Pear, Walnut & Blue Cheese Salad in Radicchio Cups: Fiesta Friday #25
When I see recipes with pears, walnuts and cheese I usually associate them with the fall, but I felt compelled to make this recipe right now, smack dab in the middle of summer. And you know what? It’s perfect for summer. The quinoa is light; the pears are sweet and juicy; the walnuts, crunchy; and the blue cheese and thyme add the right amount of rich earthiness to create a wonderfully balanced salad that is excellent for a summer picnic or a light lunch on the deck. I would serve this salad with some spicy chicken kabobs and a crisp glass of Pinot Gris. Wow, summer never tasted so good! And for anyone who thinks they may hold off till the fall to make this salad? Well hey; like the song says, ♪ It’s five o’clock fall somewhere ♪.
I am bringing a huge platter of these radicchio cups over to Angie’s Fiesta Friday tonight and I am really hoping that everyone will love them as much as my hubby and I did! I am also excited to tell you that my lovely, earthy friend, Hilda, of Along the Grapevine, and I are thrilled to by co-hosting Fiesta Friday tonight. Look out because Hilda and I have co-hosted this awesome virtual soirée together before, and we are on top of it! We may just know a few bits of gossip or where to find Angie’s secret stash of select cocktails!. Let us know what you need, because we are here to help you. I may be a bit late to the party tonight, but don’t despair, I promise I will be catching up with all of you as soon as I can get there!
For any of you who are completely new to Fiesta Friday, we welcome you! Joining this virtual party is a wonderful way to meet new blogger friends and to gain exposure and views. I suggest that you read these guidelines to get an overview of how the party works. Just be sure to link your post to Angie’s blog, as well as mine, or Hilda’s so that we know you have arrived. All you have to do is click on the button below. Happy Fiesta Friday!
I found this recipe in “Quinoa Revolution”, by Patricia Green & Carolyn Hemming. My one comment is that if you put all of the salad dressing on this amount of salad, it will become very soggy. I suggest that you pour the dressing on sparingly and taste it until you think you have the right balance. Also, separating the radicchio leaves to make the cups is finicky. You could just shred the lettuce and serve the salad on top if you are in a hurry; however, the presentation won’t be as attractive.
Quinoa, Pear, Walnut and Blue Cheese Salad in Radicchio Cups
1 1/3 cups water
2/3 cup quinoa
½ teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsweetened apple juice
¼ cup white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
2 ripe pears (Bartlett, Bosc or Anjou)
¼ cup walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped
¼ cup crumbled blue cheese
¼ cup sliced green onions
1 head radicchio
Combine the water, quinoa and salt in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Turn the heat off and allow to stand on the element, covered for 5 minutes. Remove from the element, and gently fluff with a fork. Set aside to cool completely.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the apple juice, vinegar, oil, thyme and salt. Set aside.
In a small skillet, gently toast the walnuts until they become fragrant.
Peel the pears if the skin is thick. Core and dice the pears to make 1 ½ cups. Add the pears to the dressing and gently toss to coat completely. Add the cooled quinoa, walnuts, blue cheese and green onions. Toss gently.
Just before serving, separate the radicchio leaves by cutting at the base of the head. Leaves that are 3 ½ to 4 inches across are the perfect size. Place one leaf on each plate and divide the salad between the lettuce cups. Serve immediately.
102 Responses to “Quinoa, Pear, Walnut & Blue Cheese Salad in Radicchio Cups: Fiesta Friday #25”
What a healthy treat!!
Enjoy healthy summer salads..
Me too Ema! Isn’t that just the beauty of summer? Love it! 😀
How are you doing?
Yeah, summer brings with it lotto grills, salads and soup 🙂
Check-out my Chicken Ceaser Salad
Mmm! Just did! So gorgeous for summer BBQs!
Thanks a lot..
Enjoy vegan summer soups 🙂
I really need something to eat before the party gets underway and this light, nutritious salad looks perfect as an appetizer before all the other dishes and entertainment arrive. Thanks for co-hosting with me, and will no doubt see you around at the fiesta.
Hi Hilda! So glad I could provide you with a bite to keep up your energy for all of tonight’s festivities! As always it is such a pleasure to co-host with you. I’ll be popping in and out, so we’ll catch up for sure. Enjoy!
Looks so delicious and light! Perfect for summer. 🙂
Hey Arl! Good to see you! Glad you like the look of the dish. Are you enjoying summer where you are? 😀
so refreshing !!! 🙂
Magical cups Chef! Love pear walnuts and cheese combination. These are gorgeous :).
Thanks Sonal! I’ts kind of an all-year-round classic combo, don’t you think?
[…] Julianna […]
Ah!!!! I love this!!!! I mean, I really love this Julianna!! I adore quinoa and never thought to do something so delicious like this with it! I guarantee you that I will be trying this out! So, so excited! I am going to try to be nice and not eat it all up before the rest of the party goers get to FF! 😉 Thanks for co hosting again! You definitely make a lovely co host!
Ahh Lori! You go ahead and eat as much as you want! I have stashed a second bowl in the fridge and can whip up a few more when the plate gets empty. So glad you are going to try making them. It is my pleasure to co-host again: with such lovely guests like yourself, it is just so much fun! Enjoy the party! 😀
I can’t wait…this looks like my dream meal! 🙂
Hey Julianna! Was wondering if you would be interested in doing a guest post for me sometime in August. We are going to be in the midst of moving, and it would really bless me. I thought of you for so many reasons! Let me know! I am gone on vacation so won’t be able to get back to you for a little over a week and a half. But if you want to do it, you let me know when would be best for you. Only requirement? Low-glycemic, no refined sugars. 🙂
Hey Lori! Thanks so much for thinking of me! I would be delighted to do a guest post for you. I’m not really sure how it works because I have never done one before. Do I just email you the post, or how do I get it to you on your blog? Just let me know the date and we can figure it out. I think I can come up with something low-glycemic 🙂
P.s. Would u delete my email address once you see it? Thanks so much! I’m so excited to be the first person you have guest posted for… I’m shocked tons of people haven’t already snatched you up! You are amazing!
There’s no season for recipe like yours! It has to be amazing! Have fun co-hosting!
Thanks so much, Margy! So glad you like the look of the dish. I will always have fun co-hosting. I love this party just as much as everyone! Enjoy! 😀
The combination evokes the same association in me (cold season, brrr), but what a nice surprise that´s a great summer dish!
Ah hah! Glad to know I’m not the only one that makes that association. Well I hope you enjoy it, any time of the year! 😀
What a lovely dish 🙂 enjoy co hosting again xx
Thanks Elaine! I will enjoy mingling with my blogging buddies and sampling all of their gorgeous offerings! 😀
so tempting and pretty!
Really glad you think so! 🙂
This looks amazing!
LOVE the presentation! So original 😀
Happy Fiesta Friday!
Thanks Sarah! Hope you are enjoying the party! Can I get you anything? A fresh glass of Sangria? A clean plate? Just let me know… 🙂
How very clever, what a great presentation too!
Whoa I am in love with this seasonal salad, the way you describe it, who wouldn’t fall in love? great presentation toooo….yum…
Thanks Chitra! So glad that you love it! May I get you another one? Something to drink? 😉
These little boats are wonderful, I think I could eat a dozen, well maybe not that many but I do love everything in them. So good to see you co hosting again!!
Oh thanks, Suzanne! I’m happy to be co-hosting this amazing soiree again! Yes, these are very easy to eat! I’ve already had several myself! Glad to see you at the party again. Let me know if there is anything I can get you 🙂
[…] Friday everyone. Join Angie over at the Novice Gardener for more good things to eat, Hilda and Julianna will be greeting guests too. Ginger and Buddy are sitting this one […]
Looks delicious, love quinoa salads 🙂
Thanks so much! I will have to post more salads with quinoa, I suppose. 😀
What a pretty salad!
This is a perfect and complete summer lunch. So~ beautiful! 🙂
Hi Fae. Yes, that’s how I would eat this salad too – lunch! 🙂
Wow such a beautiful salad
So glad you think so! 🙂
A delicious dish for a super Fiesta Friday Julianna. Thanks for co-hosting this week 😀
Ahh, thanks Linda! This is just the most fun virtual party around and I’m super happy that I can be part of it by co-hosting! Hope you are enjoying yourself too! 😀
I love these flavors together. Yum thanks for hosting FF.
It is my pleasure to co-host this great soiree! 😀 So glad to see you again, Tracey! 🙂
What a fabulous idea to use the cabbage leaves as bowls – love it!
They’ve got such a great colour and are so versatile… I used cabbage juice powder in the pretty icing for this week’s Fiesta Friday cakes.
Well, I’m so glad you like it. I actually used radicchio which is much softer than cabbage, but I could see how a cabbage leaf would make for a very nice presentation. You have given me a wonderful idea! Hope you are enjoying the party. By the way, I have never heard of cabbage juice powder, but it is also a great idea and I am going to investigate that more. 😀
I did wonder where the whole head of radicchio went in the cups… Serves me right for reading blogs late at night when I should be in bed… but oh, such fun! My mind must have been completely focussed on red cabbage 😉
Beautiful!! I’m making this next time I get radicchio in my CSA box! We grilled radicchio last night & I’m the only one in the family who enjoyed it 😦
LOL! Well my family is just the same – all the more for you then, right? Hopefully they will like it when you make this salad!
It’s a tough crowd over here 🙂
This is the kind of food I was looking for in the party. Fresh and healthy. Thanks for bringing it dear 🙂
You are very welcome! I love summer because there is no end of fresh and healthy food all around us! Why not make some gorgeous recipes with it all? Hope you are enjoying the party! 😀
I sure am. Thank you ☺👍
A lovely flavourful salad. Thank you for sharing this and for co-hosting the fiesta! 🙂
My pleasure, Ahila! Hope you are enjoying the party. Let me know if there is anything I can get you! 🙂
This is my perfect meal — I love salads but don’t like eating them with a fork . . . I always want a spoon and extra dressing, and want to stuff them into pita pockets or tortillas. I like eating little packages with my hands for some reason. So: this is a winner for me. Also, radicchio — love it!
Hey Sue! Well, it is more efficient to eat them as packages, and you have fewer dishes to wash too! Glad you like the recipe. Have fun at the party! 😀
I think this is really, really stunning!
Oh, well, thank-you for the lovely compliment! You are very kind 🙂
Love this whole menu – the salad, the spicy kebabs, and the pinot grigio. Really beautiful.
🙂 It’s always nice to put it all together, don’t you think? My brain is always matching flavours. Glad you like the look of it!
Radicchio cup looks so pretty! I love blue cheese and walnuts salad, I do agree that quinoa make this salad summer salad! yum!
Thanks Weebirdie! I appreciate your comments and hope you are enjoying the party! 😀
Yum! Light and tasty. I’m loving quinoa at the moment 🙂
I’m with you. I could eat quinoa 3 meals a day! 🙂
Such beautiful presentation of these little salads Julianna! They look delicious!
Well, thanks Margot! I really appreciate your comments. I really hope you are enjoying the party! 😀
Reblogged this on Chef Ceaser.
Thanks for re-blogging, chef!
Oh Julianna, these look amazing!
Thanks so much Melissa! Hope that there are some left 🙂
That is such a gorgeous salad Julianna! Love the idea of serving it in the radicchio cups! Beautiful xx
Well thanks so much, Naina! I have been doing this more and more lately. It really works for parties. Are you having fun at the party? Sure hope so! 🙂
Love the salad in radicchio cups. I love quinoa, love walnuts & pear so it is a perfect one for me!!
So glad you enjoyed it, Suchitra!
It looks delicious. I can imagine the sweet pear with the bitter radicchio, even better with the blue cheese and quinoa is always delicious. I have a large pile of your great recipes printed out to cook! 🙂
Hi Petra! Yes, this is a great balance of flavours! And let me know when you try some of those recipes, huh? It’s always fun to have the feedback! 🙂 Have a great week!
Hello Chef! This is the perfect party platter to get the Fiesta started. Sorry I’m a little late visiting your post, just getting around to visiting all the FF entries! Thank you for hosting so perfectly this week!!
Hey Saucy! My pleasure to co-host! No worries about getting to the party late! We can party for days 😀 . You’ve been very busy getting back from a trip. It takes time to get settled in again, doesn’t it?
I like the addition of quinoa in this salad – pretty presentation in the radicchio leaves 🙂
Thanks Judi! I am really enjoying quinoa these days too!
Gorgeous presentation, Julianna. Wow.
Hi Patty! Well thanks so much! Coming from you, I consider that a huge compliment! 😀
Blue cheese, pears and walnuts….Just a feast of flavours! Wonderful!!!
Thanks so much, Serena!
That looks very refreshing, Julianna! After all the indulgence, we so needed this! 🙂
LOL! Yes, it’s nice to take a little break from all of the indulgences of FF, isn’t it? Then we can just go back at it full on 😀
Wow what a beauty. It looks incredible!!!!
Oh, thanks Liz! You are too kind! 😀
Looking for more salad ideas and this is a beauty! I’m trying to make a new salad everyday so thank you for the recipe. 🙂
My pleasure! I eat tons of salads too and will have a few more in upcoming posts. Hope you enjoy this one as much as we did! Thanks so much for commenting! 😀
Yummy! Love everything about this salad. Am so glad I browsed through your site. awesome recipes and beautiful photography.
Oh, thanks so much, Namrata! Really glad that you like the salad and the blog! 😀
What an innovative idea. The salad looks wonderful! Thanks for sharing!
I’m so glad you enjoyed this, Liz! Hope you’re having a great summer. You are posting so many really awesome recipes! How do you do it?
Those are such a cute ‘cup,’ and the combination of pear, quinoa, walnut & blue cheese looks so good. It could almost taste the awesomeness ❤
Your photos are great, Julianna 🙂