Editor’s note: Andrea Weigl seeks recipes from Triangle restaurants requested by readers.
I’d love to see Iris’ recipe for Quinoa Salad. The salad pops on and off the menu and appears when the Iris chefs do special dinners at the N.C. Museum of Art. It’s terrific, and I can’t seem to come up with anything nearly as good when I try at home.
Chef Andy Hicks, who has worked as the head chef at Iris restaurant since 2000, was happy to share the recipe. It was inspired by one on Pinterest and served with a Moroccan Surf and Turf dish with ground lamb meatballs and shrimp.
That dish won’t be back on the menu until the fall so you’ll have to make do until then by trying to make it at home.
Specialty of the House gets recipes for local restaurant dishes. Send requests, including your city, to Specialty of the House, The N&O, P.O. Box 191, Raleigh, N.C. 27602; or email email@example.com.
Iris Restaurant at N.C. Museum of Art
2110 Blue Ridge Road, Raleigh
Moroccan Carrot and Quinoa Salad
1/2 cup quinoa
3/4 cup water
Pinch of sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
5 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 orange
1/2 teaspoon honey or maple syrup
2 tablespoons raisins or currants
1/2 cup toasted slivered almonds
Large handfuls of fresh parsley and cilantro, chopped
Add quinoa, water, salt, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, ginger and red pepper flakes to a small saucepan over medium heat. Once at a simmer, cover and simmer for 12 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit, still covered, for 5 minutes.
Combine carrots, olive oil, orange juice and honey or maple syrup in a large bowl. Fluff quinoa with a fork and add to carrots along with raisins, almonds, parsley and cilantro. Note: Hold off adding almonds until ready to serve or else they will get soft.
Yield: 10-12 servings.