When I think of salads I automatically think of lettuce, spinach … maybe even cabbage. Along with that, I think of tomato, carrots, maybe some bell peppers and onions. Sometimes even beans, chicken, even shrimp. I love to mix it up and can never turn down a good, hearty salad.
Something that doesn’t come to mind when I think of salad is rice. A rice salad? Ahh, yes. It’s actually better than you might think, and it pairs well with those lighter dishes, like my baked tilapia and veggie foil packets or even my zesty Italian chicken. These are both very flavorful dishes in their own rite, but the right side dish can add the perfect balance.
As I had mentioned earlier in one of my other blog posts, I love to collect recipe magazines and watch cooking shows as well as create my own recipes. One of my very favorite magazines this past Spring/Summer was from the editors of Cook’s Illustrated and America’s Test Kitchen. It was their Light & Healthy 2012 Issue and I have been obsessed with so many recipes from this magazine. I love to read the intricacies and how they make a recipe work and the various things they tested and tried. It really gets into the science of cooking, and why things react a certain way when it’s made various ways. Anyhow, I’ve tried at least a dozen recipes from this magazine, and the Rice Salad is something I’ve made numerous times. Unfortunately I can’t link to the recipe online from their website since I can’t find it, but I will post the recipe and in italics I’ll post the changes I made to this recipe. It’s amazing!
- 1 1/4 cups long-grain white rice
- salt and pepper
- 1 tomato, cored, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated (1/2 cup)
- 1/4 cup shredded fresh basil (I used 1/8 cup dried basil)
- 4 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 garlic clove, minced (I used 3, LOVE garlic!)
- 5 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
|Bring 3 quarts water to boil in large pot.
Add rice and 1 teaspoon salt and boil, stirring occasionally, until rice is just tender, 9 to 12 minutes.
Drain rice well, spread on rimmed baking sheet and let cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
|Toss cooled rice, tomato, Parmesan and basil and parsley together in large bowl.|
|Whisk vinegar, garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt together in small bowl. Whisking constantly, drizzle the oil over salad and toss to combine.|
|Season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve.
Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. All thoughts are my own.