Rice Salad with Nuts and Cranberries

When I found this recipe, I was looking for a grain based salad for a vegetarian dinner at the yoga studio. This recipe fit my requirements of being fairly 'low maintenance' and adaptable to the ingredients I had on hand. As with a lot of my cooking these days, the recipe in the book is more for inspiration and guidance than absolute rule. This one is inspired by a  recipe from Ottolenghi in Plenty More.  I've adapted the amounts for a smaller gathering. 

Ingredients:

  • 300g brown rice, rinsed
  • 100g quinoa, rinsed (soaking optional)
  • 50mL olive oil or ghee
  • 60g almonds, roughly chopped
  • 30g pinenuts
  • 30g parsley, chopped
  • 10g tarragon, chopped
  • 50g arugula, rinsed (can also roughly chop)
  • 60mL lemon juice
  • 50g dried cranberries, roughly chopped
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Cook both rice and quinoa as you normally do. I used a rice cooker for the brown rice, and the 1 part quinoa to 1.5 parts water (will add additional directions soon!) When finished, fluff and let cool a bit
  2. Place 1 tablespoon of olive oil with pinch of salt, almonds and pinenuts in skillet/wide pan over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally and watching, until the nuts start to take on some color and become fragrant. Remove to a small plate.
  3. Place grains, arugula, nuts, lemon juice, herbs, cranberries, remaining oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and some pepper in a large mixing bowl. Mix gently with hands or with large spoon. Taste for seasoning and let sit for at least 10 minutes before serving. 

Notes:

Ottolenghi adds fried onions and garlic. I'm sure these would be lovely additions but as I tend towards more sattvic food, I've left them out. 

To make this recipe a bit more 'sattvic' you can soak and peel the almonds before using and be sure not to over toast the nuts or over salt the salad!

Any color quinoa will work in this recipe- I wanted a bit of contrast with the other ingredients so I opted for black.