Give wild rice a second chance with summer salad

Associated PressSeptember 4, 2013 

Food Wild Rice Salad

This July 22, 2013 photo shows a recipe for herbed wild rice salad with apricots and blueberries. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)


Wild rice seemed to have its moment back in the '90s. That's about when Americans first seemed to discover there was more to the rice world than long grain white.

Since then, wild rice (and yes, we know it's really a grass, not a true rice) seems to have lost its luster. People moved on to all the many other new and exciting grains that have come along since, things like quinoa and farro, not to mention the many designer and heirloom rices now lining grocers' shelves.

But we still have a soft spot for the tender, nutty chew of wild rice. So we created a cool, sweet summer salad to show off just how delicious it can be.

Wild Rice Salad with Apricots, Blueberries

Prep: 15 minutes. Makes: 1/2 cup (strained).
Start to finish: 11/2 hours (30 minutes active). Servings: 6.

1 cup wild rice
Kosher salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
1tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons chopped chives
2 tablespoons chopped tarragon
2 tablespoons chopped thyme
Ground black pepper
2 fresh apricots, pitted and diced
1 cup blueberries

In a medium pot, combine the wild rice, a hefty pinch of salt and 6 cups water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 35 to 45 minutes, adding water as needed. When the rice is tender, strain through a mesh strainer and spread in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet to cool. To speed the process, you can set the baking sheet in the refrigerator.

Once the rice has cooled, in a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, honey, mustard, chives, tarragon, thyme and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Stir in the wild rice, apricots and blueberries. Season with additional salt and black pepper as needed.

Nutrition: 190 calories; 60 calories from fat (32 percent of total calories); 7 grams fat (1 grams saturated; 0 grams trans fats); 0 milligrams cholesterol; 30 grams carbohydrate; 3 grams fiber; 7 grams sugar; 4 grams protein; 230 milligrams sodium.

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