BASICS, SALADS, TRENDING

SALADS: Grain Salads

Curried Rice Salad

IN THIS SALAD the sweetness of the currants contrasts with the pungent curry flavor. If you don’t have currants, use raisins or any other dried fruit. If you’re substituting fruit, use orange zest and juice, and fresh orange segments, instead of the lime. Serve this salad on a bed of greens—such as spinach, arugula, or field greens—for a nice lunch.

SERVES 4

2 cups brown basmati rice

Zest and juice of 2 limes

¼ cup brown rice vinegar

¼ cup brown rice syrup

½ cup currants

6 green onions, finely chopped

½ small red onion, peeled and minced

1 jalapeño pepper, minced

1 tablespoon curry powder

¼ cup chopped cilantro

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Rinse the rice under cold water and drain. Add it to a pot with 4 cups of cold water. Bring it to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to medium, and cook, covered, for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the rice is tender.

2. While the rice is cooking, combine the lime zest and juice, brown rice vinegar, brown rice syrup, currants, green onion, red onion, jalapeño pepper, curry powder, cilantro, and salt and pepper in a large bowl and mix well. When the rice is finished cooking, drain off the excess water, add the rice to the bowl, and mix well.

Warm Rice and Bean Salad

BASMATI RICE HAS a mild nutty flavor and is often toasted to enhance the “nuttiness.” Be careful when toasting it in the oil-free skillet; it’s easy to overdo, and at that point the rice will take a much longer time to cook.

SERVES 4

1½ cups brown basmati rice, toasted in a dry skillet over low heat for 2 to 3 minutes

2 cups cooked navy beans, or one 15-ounce can, drained and rinsed

¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

¼ cup brown rice syrup

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

1 cup thinly sliced green onion (white and green parts)

2 tablespoons minced tarragon

¼ cup minced basil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

4 cups packed baby spinach

1. Rinse the toasted rice under cold water and drain. Add it to a pot with 3 cups of cold water. Bring it to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to medium, and cook, covered, for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the rice is tender.

2. While the rice is cooking, add the beans, balsamic vinegar, brown rice syrup, lemon zest and juice, green onion, tarragon, basil, and salt and pepper to a large bowl and mix well. When the rice is finished cooking, drain off the excess water, add it to the bowl and mix well. Divide the spinach between four plates and spoon the salad on top.

SALADS grain salad

Rice Salad with Fennel, Orange and Chickpeas

THE MILD ANISE-LIKE flavor of fennel is well balanced by the citrus in this hearty salad.

SERVES 4

1½ cups brown basmati rice

2 cups cooked chickpeas, or one 15-ounce can, drained and rinsed

1 fennel bulb, trimmed and diced

1 orange, zested, peeled, and segmented (zest and segments reserved)

¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

¼ cup finely chopped parsley

1. Rinse the rice under cold water and drain. Add it to a pot with 3 cups of cold water. Bring it to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to medium, and cook, covered, for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the rice is tender.

2. While the rice cooks, combine the chickpeas, fennel, orange zest and segments, white wine vinegar, crushed red pepper flakes, and parsley in a large bowl and mix well. When the rice is finished, add the rice to the bowl and mix well.

Quinoa Arugula Salad

THE MILD, NUTTY flavor of quinoa and the peppery bite of arugula are complemented by the sweet and tangy orange vinaigrette. This is a perfect one-dish meal in the early summer when arugula is everywhere at farmers’ markets. This salad pairs well with Grilled Portobello Mushrooms for a more substantial meal.

SERVES 4

1½ cups quinoa

Zest and juice of 2 oranges

Zest and juice of 1 lime

¼ cup brown rice vinegar

4 cups arugula

1 small red onion, peeled and thinly sliced

1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into ½-inch cubes

2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Rinse the quinoa under cold water and drain. Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a pot. Add the quinoa and bring the pot back to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, cover, and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the quinoa is tender. Drain any excess water, spread the quinoa on a baking sheet, and refrigerate until cool.

2. While the quinoa cools, combine the orange zest and juice, lime zest and juice, brown rice vinegar, arugula, onion, red pepper, pine nuts, and salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the cooled quinoa and chill for 1 hour before serving.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *