Quinoa & Beet Salad from Chef Charlie Foster

Wood's Hill Table

Here’s a substantial-yet-light seasonal salad from Charlie Foster of Woods Hill Table (and also Woods Hill Pier 4 and Adelita). This flavorful (and colorful!) beet salad features crispy quinoa, which is fried in safflower oil and spiced with a sumac and a Middle Eastern seasoning, to keep each bite tangy. It’ll be the star of the show at your next backyard shindig (or your basic weeknight dinner).


  • 1 pint tahini, organic
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/4 pint olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 5 multi-colored beets
  • 1 tablespoon organic red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 pint water
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • 1 pint black quinoa
  • 1 quart safflower oil for frying
  • 1 pint sugar
  • 1 pint water
  • 1/2 pint pine nuts
  • 1 teaspoon sumac
  • 2 cups sorrel
  • Olive oil to taste
  • Champagne vinegar to taste


  1. Blend tahini, garlic, 1/4 pint olive oil and lemon juice together in a blender until smooth.
  2. Put beets in baking tray with vinegar, 1/2 pint water and salt. Cover with tin foil.
  3. Roast at 350 for 45 min. or until fork tender.
  4. Peel when warm, then cut and cool overnight.
  5. Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil. Boil quinoa until water is evaporated and the quinoa is overcooked and very soft. Spread evenly in a thin layer on a non-stick mat.
  6. Dehydrate in the oven at 215 degrees for 1 1/2 hours or until most moisture is evaporated.
  7. Heat 1 quart organic safflower oil to 350 degrees.
  8. Fry the dried quinoa until crispy, drain on paper towels, salt to taste.
  9. Combine 1 pint sugar, 1 pint water, 1/2 pint pine nuts. Boil for 30 min and strain.
  10. Use the safflower oil from frying the quinoa and lower the temperature to 325 and fry until golden brown. Toss with salt and powdered sumac.
  11. Combine beets, sorrel, salt, black pepper and EVOO and champagne vinegar to taste.
  12. Spread tahini in the bottom of the bowl. Place the dressed beets on top. Finish with pine nuts and quinoa.

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