Hello there! I hope your 2016 is off to a very good start. If you're diving head first back into normal routine this week like I am, you might also be looking for a fresh and bright pick-me-up. This salad will do the trick. The black rice lends a rich earthiness, the persimmon offers a sweet fruity kick necessary to help ease our holiday taste buds back down to "normal". There's a welcome crunch from radicchio and toasted almonds, and the whole salad is tossed in a sweet, zesty dressing made with fresh ginger and orange juice. I'll be the first to admit it's hard to get back into routine and reset the taste buds after the holiday season. That's why I like a dish like this that feels like an everyday sort of festive but is still simple and pure fare.
Before I leave you with the recipe, I have two pieces of news to share. I am excited to announce I'll be co-hosting a retreat in Barcelona in May! Scroll to the bottom of this post for details. And next week I'll be back to start a brand-new Comfort Food series that will get us thinking about comfort food in a whole new way and, most importantly, make this transition from holiday mode back to reality a little bit easier and more comforting. ;-)
Persimmon Black Rice Salad with Ginger Orange Dressing
Notes: For this salad I use Treviso radicchio, the purple oblong-shaped variety. You might also or alternatively come across purple endive - similarly shaped - or regular radicchio, which looks like purple cabbage. Any of these varieties will work well since you want a sturdy crunch and purple color to contrast against the black rice.
- 1 1/4 cups (266 gr) black rice, soaked overnight
- Half a bunch each, mint + parsley
- 1/2 cup (70 gr) slivered almonds, toasted
- 1 medium persimmon, quartered and sliced
- Couple large handfuls Treviso radicchio
- 1/4 tsp. salt + black pepper to taste
- Ginger Orange Dressing (recipe below)
- Rinse and drain rice in a fine-mesh sieve. Add to a medium pot with 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) water and a generous pinch of salt. Cover with lid, bring to a boil, and reduce to simmer for 10 minutes. Liquid should be absorbed at this point. If not, cook a few minutes longer. Remove from heat, fluff with fork and re-cover to steam and fluff up for a few minutes.
- While rice is cooking make dressing in the bottom of a deep, large mixing bowl. Dry toast almonds over medium heat in a small skillet, tossing occasionally, until golden brown. Chop herbs, radicchio, and persimmon.
- Add cooked rice to dressing while still warm along with half of the herbs and almonds. Stir well to combine. Once rice has cooled slightly, fold in persimmon and radicchio - you can use as much radicchio as you'd like. Season with salt and pepper. Top with remaining almonds and herbs and serve.
Ginger Orange Dressing
- 1 Tbsp. ginger, grated (~ thumb size piece of ginger)
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) orange juice (juice from ~ 1/3 large orange)
- 2.5 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
- 1 tsp. maple syrup (or honey)
- 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- Grate ginger into the bottom of a deep, large mixing bowl. Whisk in remaining ingredients and set aside.