I have some standby recipes for last minute potlucks when I can’t think what to make and this is one of those recipes. I think the first time I had something like this was at a Shakespeare in the Park play in Los Angeles several years ago. I can’t even recall who brought it to the potluck, but I loved it and have recreated it in my own way many many times over since then. One of my favorite friends on earth, Deborah, is quite pregnant and by doctor’s orders has to restrict certain foods.
Deborah and I love to eat together. We love to go out and share, eat in and cook, whatever. Many of my all time favorite meals have been with this chic. Ooh- once, when I went to stay with her and her parents in Paris we went to the Jewish Quarter and ate the most amazing meal ever. I remember unbuttoning my pants and then kept going on that hummus and hatzilim (licking the plate is highly encouraged amongst us). I could name several memorable meals over the years (best bagel on earth, anyone?), but the point is, Deborah told me she was struggling with this no sugar stuff and more than that is this low on complex carbs or something. She’s not a huge fan of rice, but I think she and Chris might just like this one. So this one’s for ma petite Deborah…
Keep in mind that this is from memory so these measurements are not exact and alas, there are no pictures.
Wild Rice Salad
1 cup of wild rice (I like that lundberg mix you can find most places)
2 cups of water and/or broth (I like 1/2 chicken broth and 1/2 water)
half a bunch cilantro, chopped
green onions or spring onions, chopped
1/2 cup sliced almonds, or whole almonds chopped and toasted (I like the crunchiness once they’re toasted)
OR pecans, toasted and chopped
1/2 cup dried cherries, cranberries, or currants (don’t roll your eyes at this one Deborah- you can take it or leave this part)
If you do NOT do the dried fruit, do an avocado
chopped arugula (optional)
wheat free tamari or soy sauce
Feta cheese, crumbled (also optional)
dash of good salt and pepper
Cook rice according to instructions. When rice is totally cooled, put it in a large bowl and add all the ingredients EXCEPT arugula and cheese. Taste for flavor. Add lettuce or chopped arugula just before eating. This dish should be served room temperature. The trick is to cool the rice. If you add the sauce when it’s still hot, the texture will get funky (I get impatient, but try not to).
That’s it. I eat it as a main course, but it can also be a side or served under roast chicken.