Quinoa with cherry tomatoes and butter beans

The secret in this recipe are the red paper flakes or peperoncino as they are called in Italian. A vegan dish where the tomatoes are roasted with peperoncino and plenty of oil, then the sweet tomato oil goes straight into the butter beans, which are whizzed up into a silky and flavourful sort of hummus.

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 1kg cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 6 tbsp olive oil, plus extra to serve
  • 1 tbsp peperoncino
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp soft brown sugar
  • Salt
  • 300gr quinoa
  • 1 tbsp vegetable broth
  • 2 x 400gr cans butter beans, drained and rinsed
  • 100gr rucola salad
  • ½ lemon, juiced

Directions

  1. Heat the oven to 200C.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, olive oil, peperoncino, vinegar, sugar and half a teaspoon of salt, and toss to coat evenly.
  3. Arrange the tomato quarters on a medium-sized baking tray, and roast for 35-40 minutes, until the tomatoes are glossy and slightly charred.
  4. Meanwhile, boil the kettle and put the quinoa in a saucepan with a quarter-teaspoon of salt and the broth. Add 750ml boiling water to the pan, turn the heat on to medium, pop the lid on and leave to simmer for 20 minutes. Then turn off the heat, but do not remove the lid for 10 minutes, so the quinoa can absorb all the liquid.
  5. Once the tomatoes are cooked, put a sieve over the large bowl you used before, and drain, so all the flavoured oil ends up in the bowl. Tip the liquid into a blender – without the tomatoes – add the butter beans and half a teaspoon of salt, and whizz until super-creamy; it should be the texture of hummus.
  6. Using a fork, fluff up the quinoa and distribute between four plates. Now spoon on the bean mash, then layer the rucola, tomatoes and more rucola over each plate. Drizzle a little lemon juice and more olive oil on to the leaves, and serve.

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