This was one of my most popular salads during my catering days and it's no wonder why. It's light and refreshing, while also being hearty and earthy. A real winner no matter what time of year, but especially when multi-colored beets are available at your market.
1 cup quinoa
1/2 cup barley
1/2 cup farro
2 cups beets, roasted and chopped into small cubes
2 cups baby arugula
1/4 cup crumbled feta
4 tbsp roasted pistachios, chopped
1 small shallot, chopped
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp dijon mustard
1 tsp agave nectar
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Cook quinoa, barley and farro according to package instructions. Drain, then add all grains to a large bowl, and immediately add the chopped beets, while the grains are still hot. This helps the grains get that purple tint.
To make the dressing, whisk together the shallot, lemon juice, dijon and agave. When they are well mixed, slowly drizzle in the olive oil, whisking the whole time to emulsify the dressing. Season with salt and pepper.
Just before serving, toss the arugula, feta and pistachios into the grain mixture. Reserve a bit of each for garnish. Toss in the dressing, garnish (with edible flowers if you've got 'em!) and serve.
Wonderful with grilled chicken or shrimp.