Sometimes when we make a new recipe for the first time, we are completely surprised with the outcome. Of course this could be a delightful surprise or a horrid one. I have had a few disasters lately, but this recipe was a brilliant surprise! Everything about it, from the texture, the appearance, and the flavours, screamed, yes! Black rice isn’t commonly eaten here, but the chewy nature of it, combined with the wild rice is beautiful in a salad such as this one. It has a nutty flavour, which makes a lovely contrast to the sweetness of the roasted butternut squash. Both the pomegranate seeds and the pistachios add a crunchy layer to keep your palate wondering what is coming next! My husband and I each wolfed down a huge plate of this beauty for dinner one night and then ate the leftovers for breakfast, for the next few days, knowing I would have to make it again really soon! So I decided to make it for the Fiesta Friday gang. I am starting to get to know some of these crazy foodie partiers and I was pretty sure they would enjoy this salad. If you haven’t checked out Angie’s Fiesta Friday over at The Novice Gardener yet, your really must! We are just having too much fun!
I found this recipe in the January 2014 Bon Appétit magazine.
1 ½ cups black rice
½ cup wild rice
4 cups water
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced
½ cup olive oil, divided
¼ cup red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 cup pomegranate seeds
1 cup micro greens or fresh herbs such as parsley, and cilantro or use salad greens like I did.
½ cup roasted pistachios, coarsely chopped
Preheat oven to 450°.
Toss squash with ¼ cup oil and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast, tossing once, until golden brown and tender; approximately 20 – 25 minutes. Let cool.
Place rice in a medium saucepan and add water and salt. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for about 40 minutes until the rice is tender. Drain off any excess water. Spread rice out on a baking sheet and allow any excess water to evaporate.
In a large bowl, whisk together vinegar, honey and remaining ¼ cup olive oil.
Add rice, squash, scallions, pomegranate seeds, microgreens, and pistachios, salt and pepper and toss to combine.
Salad without microgreens can be made 4 hours ahead. Cover and chill.
Serve as a side dish or add some roasted chicken and serve as a main course.