So the other externs and I have been operating under the impression that our office does not have a microwave. The copy room, while equipped with a fridge and a toaster, lacks that quintessential kitchen appliance that students and workaholics alike cannot seem to live without. Consequently, we’ve been experimenting with different recipes for salads and learning about the joys of eating cold leftovers (pizza still trumps all other foods in this category). Well, turns out we’re idiots. There’s been a microwave the whole time on the basement level. In any case, I have eaten my fair share of salads over the last few weeks, and, given the descent of the summer heat, I don’t really see myself changing that pattern anytime soon–even with a microwave.
I have a thing for nutty grains. Quinoa, farro, barley–I love their texture in a salad. One grain of which I am particularly fond is wild rice. Nuttier and far healthier than the average white grain, wild rice is high in protein and fiber and low in fat. It makes for a great alternative to pasta in salads as well. As per usual, this salad was the result of using the contents of my fridge/pantry.
So here’s to eating more wholesome grains and staying cool in the blazing heat! Happy eating!
Wild Rice Salad
- 1 cup wild rice medley (combination of brown basmati and wild rice)
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 1 scallion, finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
- 1/3-cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped
- 1/3 cup dried cherries, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped, cooked chicken (i.e. leftovers; totally optional)
- 4-5 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons good quality extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a medium pot, combine your rice with 2-1/4 cups water. Stir, then bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 35-45 minutes. This is a great time to chop your celery, toast your nuts, etc. Or, you know, write that memo you are pretending doesn’t exist….
- Once cooked, allow the rice to cool completely. Although rinsing rice in cold water is generally frowned upon, it doesn’t hurt here as it just gets rid of the unnecessary starch.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together your vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper to form a quick vinaigrette.
- Add in all of your remaining ingredients, including the cooled rice, and toss.
- Serve cool or at room temperature.