Monday, July 1, 2013

Curried Rice Salad (Vegan/GF) - Perfect 4th of July side dish

I had forgotten about this recipe until this weekend when it was a potluck birthday party extravaganza with my boyfriend's family.  How could I forget this delectable, easy, healthy salad?  It's cool and refreshing - the perfect side dish for your 4th of July parties, or any time this summer.

I used everything fresh and organic and wow!  Was it ever a hit.

Curried Rice Salad
2 Tbsp coconut oil
1 medium onion, finely choppped
1/2 tsp fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 Tbsp curry powder
1 C rice (dry)
2 C water
1 tsp salt
1 C unsweetened, shredded coconut
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 medium red pepper, chopped
3/4 C raisins
1 Granny Smith apple, cored and chopped
1 C black or red grapes

1/2 C red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp garlic, minced
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/4 C + 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
pinch of salt
2 tsp ground pepper

1/4 C Thai sweet or Genovese basil, chopped or ribboned

1. Saute onion in 2 Tbsp coconut oil in large saucepan on stove (med-high heat) for 2 minutes.  Add ginger and curry powder and stir for 30 seconds.

2. Add rice and saute for 1 minute, stirring constantly.  Add the water and salt, cover and bring to boil.  Reduce heat to low and simmer 15 minutes.  Be careful pot does not boil dry.  When all water is absorbed, taste to ensure rice has cooked.  If not yet cooked, add another 1/2 C very hot water, cover, and test again.  Keep adding until rice is tender.
**I used brown Basmati rice which required more water than 2 cups - it depends on the rice.  You will have to check on it.

3.  When rice is tender, cover and let sit for 5 minutes, then remove lid and fluff with a work.  Set aside, and allow to cool with lid off.

4. Toast coconut in oven at 300F until lightly browned, for about 10 minutes.  It will look like this when done, and will give off a wonderful aroma as it toasts.

5. Place coconut in a large bowl.  Add the cooled rice, celery, red pepper, raisins, apple and grapes.  Stir to combine.

6. In a small bowl, whisk together all vinaigrette ingredients.  Pour over salad and toss.  Cover and refrigerate until well-chilled.  Just before serving, garnish with basil.

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