The distinct nutty flavor of wild rice, balanced with the sweet tang of oranges, perfectly accompanies a serving of pork tenderloin or grilled chicken.
Wild Rice and Orange Salad
¼ cup (60 mL) uncooked wild rice, rinsed
½ cup (125 mL) uncooked white basmati rice, rinsed
2 medium shallots, minced
½ of a green pepper, fine dice
¼ cup (60 mL) finely chopped green onions
½ cup (125 mL) finely chopped dried apricots
½ cup (125 mL) mandarin orange segments, canned or fresh
½ cup (125 mL) sliced or slivered almonds
2 tablespoons (30 mL) chopped fresh cilantro or Italian parsley
½ cup (125 mL) orange juice
2 tablespoons (30 mL) fruit vinegar (orange, pear, or apple cider)
1 tablespoon (15 mL) orange zest
2 teaspoons (10 mL) honey
⅓-½ cup (85-125 mL) vegetable or grapeseed oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Prepare rice: Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add a generous amount of salt, and add the wild rice. Cook, at a simmer, for 25-30 minutes. Now, add the basmati rice. Continue to cook until both grains are tender (an additional 15-20 minutes). Using a sieve, drain rice and give it a quick rinse under some cold water. Place into a large salad bowl and add a tablespoon of vegetable oil to prevent the grains from sticking together.
- While rice is cooking, reduce the orange juice to ¼ cup by simmering in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Cool the reduction.
- Add shallots, green pepper, green onions, apricot, and orange pieces to the rice. Gently mix together.
- Prepare vinaigrette: Whisk together the orange juice reduction, fruit vinegar, orange zest, and honey. Drizzle in oil, whisking until vinaigrette is thick. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Pour vinaigrette over rice mixture and combine. Stir in almonds and fresh herbs. Refrigerate until well chilled. Remove from refrigerator about an hour before serving.
- To serve, garnish with extra almonds and orange zest.