Orange, mint and apricot Moroccan quinoa salad

So I know I've been going a bit mad for ras-el-hanout in recent times. However, my spice container tells me that ras-el-hanout translates to 'top of the shop' (I have not checked but have come to accept this as the truth) so I promise I'm not leading you astray. 

The idea of soaking spices, dried fruits and herbs came to me like an epiphany, in the form of a daytime television cooking program. And what an idea! I believe there is a saying that says (again, I have not checked this fact) everything is better with butter. Even quinoa. 



1 cup quinoa
70g butter
1-2 tablespoon ras-el-hanout
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 cup dried apricots
4 cloves garlic
30g preserved lemon, chopped finely
small handful of mint
small handful of rocket
generous salt and pepper
1 orange
1/2 cup chopped almonds



1. fill a large saucepan with water, and add your quinoa, preserved lemon, and some salt. Bring to the boil, and then put the timer on for 7 minutes.
2. In a small saucepan, add the butter, ras el hanout, cumin, apricots, crushed garlic, a few crushed mint leaves and the rest of the preserved lemon. Cook on a low heat for about 10-15 minutes, and then set aside.
3. The quinoa should now be done, so drain it and let it cool 4 a bit. Once it has, pop it in a large mixing bowl, and cover it with the buttery deliciousness. Add your rocket, extra mint, and a bit of chilli if you like it hot.
4. Juice one half of your orange, and pour it over the top. Slice the other half. When you are ready, assemble the quinoa in your desired vessel (mixing bowls are accepted) and top with the orange slices and the chopped almonds.