This easy brown rice salad can be prepared in advance and refrigerated. Adjust the spices just before serving. If you like a blast of flavor, no need to be shy: Add additional cumin, cayenne and garlic.
Brown Rice & Veggie Salad With Cumin Vinaigrette
| Serves 4 |
265 calories per side serving
- 2 cups steamed brown rice*
- 1 large ear of fresh corn
- 2 small bell peppers – red or orange or a combination
- 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
- Several sprigs fresh cilantro leaves
- 1/3 cup pumpkin seeds
- Red onion, sliced thin – to taste
- Optional: 1/2 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
- Salt & fresh ground pepper to taste
*Ready-made brown rice is available at Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s and other grocery stores.
Cumin Vinaigrette Dressing
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh garlic, minced (1 large clove)
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
Prepare the corn: Fill a small saucepan with water and place over high heat. Add about 1/8 teaspoon of salt and bring the water to a full boil. Drop the corn into the water and allow to cook for 30 seconds. Using a tong or fork, remove immediately and run cold water over the corn to stop the cooking. Using a sharp knife, slice the corn off the ear onto a cutting board.
Prepare other salad ingredients: Remove the stem, seeds and white pith from the bell peppers and chop into roughly 1/4 – 1/2 inch pieces. Chop enough cilantro leaves to make about 1/4 cup, loosely packed.
Make the dressing: In a small bowl or blender, whisk all the dressing ingredients together until well emulsified. Taste test the dressing. Adjust the seasonings, adding additional spices, salt or pepper according to your preference.
Assemble the salad: Transfer the rice, corn and other salad ingredients to a salad bowl. Toss with a light coating of the dressing. Taste the salad; add additional salt and pepper according to taste. Garnish the salad with additional grated cheese, pumpkin seeds and a drizzle of dressing, if desired. Serve, and enjoy!