Friday, July 31, 2009

My Gift To You

You must make this salad. There, I said it. This is a great salad anytime of the year. It is especially great for summer because it contains no mayo, cream or dairy to decompose at the neighborhood picnic thereby poisoning your community and ruining your rep.

Another bonus, it holds up well in the fridge a day later.

Serves 8-10

2 c wild rice
6 c water
3 T rice vinegar
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 t cardamom
1 1/2 t soy sauce
1 t ground pink peppercorns
1 t ground white peppercorns
3 T Maple Syrup
1/3 canola oil
3/4 c chopped celery
1 c dried cranberries
1/2 c finely chopped scallions
3/4 c chopped pecans (I like Trader Joe's Sweet & Spicy Pecans)

Bring water with a pinch of salt to a boil. Add rice and bring back to a boil. Cover, turn heat to low and let simmer about 30 minutes. Look for some of the grains to have opened but others should still have a bite. Drain and return to the pan. Cover and let steam for 5 minutes. Chill rice.

Combine rice vinegar, garlic, soy sauce, ground peppercorns, cardamom, maple syrup & canola oil. Add to rice along with pecans, scallions, cranberries and celery. You can double the dressing recipe if you like it really saturated or save the rest of the dressing for salad.

*Variations: Instead of the cranberries, substitute a crisp apple like a Granny Smith or Fuji in the fall & winter. You can also try other nuts if you don't like pecans. Also, while the pink AND white peppercorns are not essential, they add so much to the dish and are worth seeking out!

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