Place the quinoa in a fine strainer and hold it under cold running water until the water runs clear, then drain well. Put it in a saucepan with the water and a pinch of salt. Bring to a rolling boil. Reduce the heat, cover, then simmer until the grains are translucent and the germ has spiralled out from each grain, about 15 minutes. Place the quinoa in a bowl, then let it cool down about 1 h at room temperature.
Add the pecans, cranberries, zest and juice of the orange, oil, balsamic vinegar, thyme and salt. Mix well.
Chill in the refrigerator for about 1 h to allow the flavours to meld. Adjust the seasoning then serve.
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