If you like to cook and get a little creative in the kitchen, then you’re probably a little like me in that you draw a lot of inspiration from other cooks, food blogs, magazines, and cookbooks. The fact that you’re even reading this post on this little blog of mine makes think I’m at least a little bit right about that. I know I’m more than a little guilty of getting lost in a copy of Bon Appetit and spending way too much time on Pinterest and Foodgawker drooling over the beautiful images. And my nightstand is always, always covered in a ridiculously large stack of cookbooks on loan from my local library. What can I say? I like food.
And I’m such a sucker for a good cookbook. I’ve been wanting to do cookbook reviews for quite some time now, so that I can share some of my favorites with you guys. So today I’m doing something a little bit different.
I’m featuring a recipe that is slightly adapted (with a just a few of my own little tweaks) from a cookbook that caught my eye. I’d like to feature at least a couple of recipes from each cookbook and then follow them up with a review of the book as a whole.
This particular recipe is adapted from Anya Kassoff’s “Miso & Raspberry Forbidden Rice Salad” from her cookbook The Vibrant Table. (Stay tuned for my review!) This is a unique salad that’s absolutely stunning with its mix of bright, rich colors.
The chewy, nutty black rice pairs with sweet, earthy golden beets, tart red raspberries, and crisp, spicy pink radishes, with some buttery green pistachios as a garnish. My version substitutes sweet and tender mache for the watercress in the original recipe and use a combination of blackberries and raspberries. I’ve also added orange juice and fresh ginger to the miso dressing for an extra kick of flavor. And watermelon radishes! Because I’m obsessed with watermelon radishes.
This a great end-of-summer salad to celebrate the transition of the seasons. It’s hearty enough to eat on its own for lunch or it can be served alongside a light dinner. You can also cook the rice, roast the beets, and make the dressing ahead of time and then throw everything together at the last-minute if you’re prepping for a picnic or a barbecue. I dunno, I just get the feeling that this salad is probably way tastier when eaten outside. It screams for a checkered tablecloth and burlap placemats and fancy drinks in mason jar mugs, am I right? No? That’s just me? Well, have it your way. 😉
Black rice is the most antioxidant-rich type of rice out there! It is absolutely loaded with anthocyanins that can help to reduce inflammation in the body, prevent heart disease, and fight the free radicals that can contribute to some cancers. Black rice also has more protein, fiber, and iron than brown rice. And it’s pretty, too!
- 3 small to medium golden beets
- 1 cup black rice, pre-soaked if possible*
- 1 bunch (about 2 cups) mache (can also substitute watercress or any other tender leafy green)
- 4-8 small to medium radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 cup raspberries and/or blackberries
- ¼ cup pistachio nuts, crushed, for garnish (optional, omit to make nut-free)
- ¼ cup fresh-squeezed orange juice
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1½ tablespoons fresh-squeezed lime juice
- 2 tablespoons miso paste (I used chickpea miso to make this soy-free)
- 1 tablespoon honey or agave
- 2 teaspoons fresh grated ginger
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Scrub beets well, then wrap each beet in aluminum foil and roast for 60-90 minutes until tender. Remove from oven, unwrap, and allow to cool slightly.
- While beets are cooking, rinse the black rice well, then place in a small saucepan with two cups of cold water and bring to a boil. Cook for 30-60 minutes until the rice is fully cooked and chewy.
- To make the dressing, combine all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until smooth. (Tip: Dissolving the miso paste in a small amount of the liquid before adding to the rest of the dressing will make it much easier to incorporate in.)
- Once beets and rice are cooked and cooled, slice the beets into ¼ inch slices, then assemble the salad by layering the vegetables and greens over the rice and drizzling with the dressing.