Wild Rice Salad

This is one amazingly healthy little salad.  Great for parties, we served it with Chicken Salad Sliders at a baby shower recently, and it was a hit.  This is a great fall salad and a wonderful example of how healthy food is great food - you don't need to add a bunch of junk to make something taste extraordinary.  This would make an amazing Thanksgiving side dish...

This is an Ina Garten recipe that is simple, easy and fast.  I love her cooking, in the kitchen, she is one of my idols.  The other great thing about this salad is the colors.  I am in love with the contrasting colors that this salad shows off.  The dark purple-brown of the rice and the vibrant orange wedges...art in a bowl.  I really think that food tastes better when it is colorful...call me crazy!

Ina Garten 
"Barefoot Contessa How Easy Is That?"

1 cup long grain wild rice (I used Japonica Rice)
Kosher Salt
2 navel oranges
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice
2 Tbsp raspberry vinegar (available in the vinegar section of the grocery store)
1/2 cup seedless green grapes, cut in half
1/2 cup pecans, toasted
1/4 cup dried cranberries
2 Tbsp scallions, white and green parts, chopped
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Place the wild rice in a medium pot with 4 cups of water and 2 teaspoons of salt and bring to a boil.  Simmer uncovered for 50 to 60 minutes, until the rice is very tender.  Drain well and place the rice back in the pot.  Cover and allow to steam for 10 minutes.  

While rice is still warm, place it in a mixing bowl.  Peel the oranges with a sharp knife (if you want to use the zest, remove it from the oranges before peeling), removing all the white pith.  Cut between the membranes ("supreme") and add the orange sections to the bowl with the rice.  Add the olive oil, orange juice, raspberry vinegar, grapes, pecans, cranberries, scallions 1/2 tsp salt, and the pepper.  Allow to sit for 30 minutes for the flavors to blend.  Taste for seasonings and serve at room temperature.  


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