Back in the day, before working and playing in this fine Kitchen, I used to work at an organic grocery store. I had loads of fun but apparently I was the only one who enjoyed that place because it went out of business shortly after I started working there (was it something I did?!)
After it closed down, the employees were allowed to take whatever we wanted from 2 parts of the store: the dairy case and the bulk section. Now, dairy and I don't get along but lucky for me, the sauerkraut was kept in this area as well. No one else seemed to care for the kraut except for lucky me - I went home with 10 big jars of the stuff! As for the bulk section, there were only a few odds and ends leftover and somehow I ended up with a ton of wild rice. I didn't really know what to do with it and didn't particularly like wild rice, but I didn't want it to go to waste so I took it home. It was free anyways so why not right?
I stumbled upon this massive quantity of wild rice as I was doing a little pantry clean out a few weeks ago. It was taking up so much space and I needed to do something about it. And do something about it I did indeed with this killer wild rice salad!
What in tarnations is wild rice anyways? Here are some fun facts!
- The name wild rice means "good berry".
- Although we call it "rice", wild rice is actually not rice at all. It is a water-grass seed that has been eaten by people since prehistoric times. There are several varieties of it, and is locally grown in the rivers and lakes of Canada (abundantly in Saskatchewan).
- Wild rice comprises a sacred component of several Native American cultures.
- It is a good source of protein, and rich in minerals such as potassium, zinc, and magnesium as well as B vitamins.
- Like our well-known friend brown rice, wild rice is totally gluten free but boasts a pleasant chewier texture and rich nutty flavour. It's quite delicious!
Summertastic Wild Rice Salad
2 cups cooked wild rice
1/2 cup chickpeas (cooked)
1/2 cup edamame
1/4 cup organic corn
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, grated
1/2 cup herbs of choice, finely chopped
1/2 red/orange/yellow pepper, chopped
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup chopped radishes (approx 4 radishes)
2 Tbsp dijon mustard
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
Pinch of cayenne pepper
- Throw all salad ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
- Prepare dressing and pour over salad.
- Mix thoroughly and allow to marinade in the fridge for a few hours before serving.
- If you happen to be super impatient (like myself) serve right away.
Cooking wild rice is a little different than cooking brown. For every 1 cup of wild rice, add 3 cups of water to a pot. Bring to a boil and reduce to simmer for 50-60 minutes until water is absorbed and rice is tender. You'll notice that some kernels open up while others do not. This is totally normal.
Question Of The Day: What food did you think you didn't like but later realized you kind of love?