>Quinoa Chickpea Salad & Baked Salmon with Rosemary

>I am going to start off with what we did during the weekend, then work my way down to the dishes I made on Thursday night. We visited Mercato Mall in Jumeirah and I have to say, the building, layout, theme of the mall just blew me away. Although it isn’t as big or extravagant as the other malls, it has character and ambiance! It was a lovely mall to settle into, sit down and have a cup of coffee and cake within one of its many courtyards. The mall creates an outside feel, inside the mall which was such a novelty. Just check out the pics below (found online) but next time when we visit again, I will be snapping away (to the horrors of my husband)… he’ll be saying, “stop acting like a tourist!”, poor guy. Think it’s times like those when he wishes he didn’t know me.
We sat down in the middle courtyard, Starbucks, absorbing the environment with all the other coffee aficionado’s. I had steam hot milk and my husband had a rasberry ice blend with some chocolate covered raisins with a hint of mocha java and rasberry coating. We enjoyed people watching and did abit of people gossiping like everyone else watching everybody else. It was lovely! There were other cafes there too that we will try when we go back, plus all the shopping that we will be doing. I’ve already ‘identified’ potential purchases… damn it, hold me back!!

We enjoyed sushi at Yo!Sushi at Dubai Marina Mall for lunch, that was our meal for the entire day as we did eat alot and we have the receipt to prove it too! We didn’t realise that the bill was going to be so ‘large’. We had a good walk around the mall, that’s one of our favourite malls, its quiet and again, the theme of the mall is all about relaxation and enjoyment, with expensive specialist stores. I think for a relaxing and slow paced mall visit, Mercato and Marina Malls would be my picks. Burjuman and Wafi would come in close and then the bigger malls like Mall of Emirates, Dubai Mall, Festival City, Deira, etc. They’re more popular so it’s busier and more packed with visitors. Think I’m missing other malls, can’t really remember now but I’m sure there’s loads out there that we haven’t visited yet.

Anyway, me being unwell and all that the past week with cough, dinners made were not very fancy or special, but I do try to make them different every week. On Tuesday and Wednesday, we enjoyed a big fry up of spinach, turkey frankfuters, baked beans, onions and garlic plus an egg for good luck. My husband enjoyed it with a side of toast.

On Thursday, after feeling slightly better, I made my own Quinoa and Chickpea Warm Salad consisting of:

1/3 cup quinoa, cooked
1/3 cup millet, cooked
2 cups chickpea, cooked
1/2 cup each of sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds
1 cup dried apricots, chopped
1/2 cup tahini (or to taste)
salt and pepper to taste

Accompanying the quinoa chickpea salad was a super tasty, delicious salmon, baked with garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper and a whole load of rosemary spice! It was utterly heavenly. The Norwegian salmon was so fresh and thick, lots of meat on it, 2 slices was enough for both of us to share over 2 days! We got it on sale from Carrefour at AED25/kg which was a bargain! We got 1.3kgs worth which we will be able to eat over a few weeks. Worth stocking up on bargains when they come by, that is if you have enough room in your freezer. I had to repack the salmon to fit into our small freezer along with the thick tenderloin beef cuts from Brazil.

Lovely combination of tasty delicious fish with a light creamy quinoa salad and roasted garlic for extra zing to the tastebuds. I have to admit, I over did it with the garlic and felt sickly for the next 2days. Not a very nice feeling at all!! I’ve learnt my lesson. But I have to say thank you to my husband for being so nice and helping me finish the rest of the garlic the next day although I’m sure he felt sickly after that. Will slow down on the garlic intake for a while, think we’ve been sufficiently scared for now.

This is one of my favourite pictures for the weekend. My husband spoke of missing a plain and simple bacon and egg sammie for a while now and I thought I’d surprise him with one. I found a whole load of bacon (smoked and unsmoked) on sale at Choitrams, which is the cheapest I’ve seen since we’ve been here so I stocked up! I’m so happy with my cheap finds lately, it’s worth it especially when you see how much they’re charging for pork out there. I fried up the bacon, two eggs, placed two pieces of toasts on top of the eggs. The smell was intoxicating! It was utterly lovely and there’s some left over for more sandwiches, which should put a smile on my husband’s face when he opens his lunchbox!