There’s Some Really Good Stuff Going on Here.
Here I am with another rice salad. And what a beauty it is. Black rice lends itself so well to salads that I’ve kind of been hooked on it for awhile. It has the perfect texture for a salad because it doesn’t ever get mushy when I mix it with the dressing. It has a firm chewiness that I can’t seem to get enough of and it’s also beautiful. I like Italian Venere black rice* better than Chinese black rice in salads. The grains seem to stay more separate and lend themselves very well to being mixed with other ingredients.
The deep purple color of the rice got me to thinking about combining it with some roasted beets. There’s no such thing as too much beautiful color, right?
I also thought a crisp sweet/tart apple would work well to add some sharpness to the overall flavor of the salad. I wanted even more crunch, so I diced up a carrot, sliced some scallions and tossed them to the rice and the dressing. Plenty of Dijon mustard, pomegranate molasses, maple syrup, a little crushed fennel seed, and olive oil finished off the dressing. After adding salt and pepper, it was good to go.
I’ve kind of been on an aged English cheddar cheese jag recently. There is aged cheddar and then there is really great aged English cheddar and there is a huge difference in the flavor. If you can get your hands on some of the really good stuff, I encourage you to try it out here in this salad. I crumbled up a couple ounces of the cheese and scattered it on top of the salad, along with some toasted pistachios and a few parsley leaves. Nothing more was needed.
It was so good I could hardly stand it. Yeah, I’m really drawn to these kinds of recipes. There’s just so much going on flavor-wise and texture-wise. I recommend serving it with something simple because this will be the star of the show. Simply grilled lamb chops or sausages would work particularly well with this recipe. Or this could be the main attraction. In my opinion, nothing else is really needed. This salad really does have it all.