The essence of orange captures the attention in this salad, making it a complimentary side-dish for a pork or chicken entrée.
On its own, it is a light and refreshing experience.
Moroccan Rice Salad
Number of Servings: 4-6
¾ cup (185 mL) white or brown long grain rice or basmati rice, uncooked
¼ cup (60 mL) chopped green onions
¼ cup (60 mL) finely chopped red onion
¼ of a green pepper, diced
1 carrot, grated
½ cup (125 mL) sliced or slivered almonds
1/3 cup (85 mL) chopped dates and/or raisins
2 tablespoons (30 mL) chopped fresh mint
¼ cup (60 mL) chopped fresh cilantro
1/3 cup (85 mL) fresh orange juice
2 teaspoons (10 mL) honey
1 tablespoon (15 mL) orange zest
1 tablespoon (15 mL) apple cider vinegar
½ teaspoon (2.5 mL) ground coriander
½ teaspoon (2.5 mL) ground cumin
3 tablespoons (45 mL) vegetable or grapeseed oil
Sea salt; freshly ground black pepper
- Prepare rice: Bring a pot of water to a boil; add some salt; add rice. Cook, over low heat, until rice is tender (15 -20 minutes, depending on the type of rice -check package recommendations).
- While rice is cooking, prepare vinaigrette: Reduce orange juice to 2 tablespoons by simmering it in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Remove from heat; add honey and orange zest. Allow to cool. Add vinegar, coriander, and cumin. Whisk in oil. Season to taste.
- When rice has completed cooking, drain; give it a quick rinse under cold water; and spread on a parchment-lined baking sheet to cool and dry out a little more (5-10 minutes). Place in a salad bowl, and stir in 2-3 tablespoons of vinaigrette. Refrigerate to cool completely (1/2 hour).
- Add onions, green peppers, grated carrot, almonds and dried fruit to the rice.
- Pour remaining vinaigrette over salad and stir to fully combine. Refrigerate for about 1 hour before serving. If salad has been refrigerated longer than an hour, let it come to room temperature before serving.
- Just before serving, fold in chopped herbs.
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