Warm quinoa salad

  (Anne Cusack / Los Angeles Times)

Get your meal started with a deliciously fresh idea. Warm quinoa salad will have them coming back for seconds.

Total time: 1 hour
Servings: 4

Note: Red quinoa is available at well-stocked markets. Recipe adapted from Fig Restaurant in Los Angeles.

Orange blossom vinaigrette:
Orange blossom vinaigrette
1 cup orange juice
1/4 cup orange blossom honey
1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar
1 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper

1. In a small saucepan, bring the orange juice to a simmer. Reduce the orange juice by one-third to yield two-thirds cup, about 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat and place the reduced orange juice in a medium bowl. Set aside until cool.

2. To the reduced orange juice, whisk in the honey and then the vinegar. Slowly whisk in the olive oil to emulsify. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until needed. This makes about 2 cups dressing, more than is needed for the remainder of the recipe; the dressing should keep for about 5 days, refrigerated.

Salad and assembly:
1/4 pound peeled, seeded butternut squash, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 1 cup)
Canola oil
Salt and pepper
1/4 pound haricots vert, ends trimmed (about 1 cup)
1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled and cored and cut into 1/2-inch cubes