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Wild Rice Cranberry Apple Salad, A Party For Your Mouth!

December 24, 2010

This Wild Rice Cranberry Apple Salad packs a surprising punch!  It is a prime example of how a few simple choice ingredients can really come together to create a sensational dish.  The wild rice adds drama, the celery adds crunch, the cranberries and apples add a hint of sweetness, the green onions add tang and the orange juice-garlic dressing adds layers of delightful appeal.

This flavourful salad is so easy to throw together you will be pleased to serve it up to family and guests alike as a side dish for the holidays, a weeknight meal, or even a potluck.

Don’t forget to experiment depending on seasonal offerings.  Exchange the cranberries and apples for a seasonal fruit or add some sesame seeds or parsley.  Parsley is a good addition to anything that includes garlic as it freshens your breath!  The only note of importance is to include crunch, sweet and tang to create an aura of complexity.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup Wild Rice

1 cup Brown Rice (white rice is probably okay, but why not use brown for the extra nutrients?)

Green onion

Celery

Cranberries

Apple

For the dressing:

Concentrated unsweetened orange juice, a few spoonfuls (regular orange juice might be fine)

Vegetable oil such as corn oil or olive oil, one spoonful (some sort of vinegar might taste good as a substitution in a pinch)

Garlic

Start by cooking your rice.  This will ideally cool before adding the rest of the ingredients.  Feel free to use yesterday’s leftover rice!  If you are using a combination of wild rice and brown as I did, you may cook them in the same pot as they cook at the same speed but remember wild rice uses more water than brown (or white) rice, so add the appropriate amount.  One cup of brown rice needs two cups of water.  Wild rice requires a one to three ratio though, so half a cup of wild rice requires 1.5 cups of water for cooking.  Total required water for both the brown and wild rice cooking together therefore equals 3.5 cups water.

Let me be honest, I thought I had wild rice in my cupboard, but I didn’t, so I used a nice Black and Mahogany rice mixture I happened to have on hand for these photos instead.

Once your rice is cooked, you can cool it quickly by spreading it out on a flat surface and placing it in the fridge for at least ten minutes, preferably half an hour.

Chop up your celery and green onions and add a large bowl with the cold rice.  As this seems to be a common question. you can and should use both the green and white portions of a green onion.  The green side is mild and pretty, the white side is more flavourful but still milder than a regular onion.

Throw in some cranberries and chopped apple.

For the dressing, mix a few spoons of concentrated orange juice with a spoonful of oil and add a clove or two of minced garlic.

Only add the dressing once you are ready to the serve the salad, otherwise it will be soaked up by the rice and texture won’t be right.

Serve with a smile! Cheers! Jump up.

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