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Laura's Easy Kitchen-Sink Rice Salad

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“This salad works for main meals, especially with the addition of cold chopped chicken and/or cheese. It's a fantastic potluck dish. Lastly, it's a diabetic friendly salad because the whole grain brown rice and other vegetables are very high in fiber. How it came about: I love salads, but I noticed a while ago that what I really loved was the stuff that dressed the salad. I also get very bored with lettuce, even my favorite, bronze or red leaf lettuce. I also wanted to make something that was a one-pot meal, not necessarily hot, reasonably high in protein, sustaining, and tasty. Lastly, I had been invited to a potluck dinner, had signed up to bring a salad, and had no lettuce available -- but I did have brown rice. Maybe that would work -- and it did! This is the one recipe I bring to potlucks that is always, always gone before I can go back for seconds, so I usually save a small bowl at home for myself. I hope you like it, too! I have made this successfully using regular brown rice, instant brown rice, quick brown rice, and brown rice blends that included wild rice and other grains. The great thing about the recipe is that it is completely forgiving -- you can adjust amounts, add and delete items, and change seasoning to your taste and whatever you have one hand -- as long as you always use brown rice as the base.”
READY IN:
55mins
SERVES:
24
YIELD:
18 cups
UNITS:
US

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. Add one Tbsp of dried herb mix and one tsp of garlic powder to the rice you are planning to use.If using instant or quick brown rice, prepare rice according to directions. If using a rice cooker, put two cups of rice in with three cups of water, or water to just cover the second knuckle of your hand placed flat on the top of the rice; cover and start the cooker. If stovetop, put the rice and water in a two-quart pot and bring to a boil; cover tightly and reduce heat to low; cook on low for 25-30 minutes. Cool to room temperature.
  2. While the rice is cooking, prep the other ingredients: drain and rinse canned ingredients; shave entire carrots into strips; chop onion, parsley, celery, tomatoes, artichoke bottoms, and any additional or optional ingredients.
  3. In a very large bowl, combine the remaining herb mix, garlic powder, and all other ingredients; mix well and chill.
  4. When the rice has cooled, add it to the bowl and mix well.
  5. Combine the ingredients for the dressing in a mixing cup; whisk together, and pour immediately over the rice mixture; stir well.
  6. Chill as needed; this salad works as well cold as it does at room temperature.
  7. If desired, line a large serving bowl with red/bronze lettuce leaves and heap rice salad mixture in it. Top with mandarin orange segments for a really lovely and delicious presentation.
  8. Note: When we make this, we usually include the avocado and cheese because we like how they round out the flavor. If you do use avocado, dipping it in lemon water before putting it in the salad will help keep it from going brown if you do not plan to serve for a day or so. We have found that the salad is even more delicious the next day, but the texture is not as full of contrasts, and by the third day it still tastes great but gets kind of watery (we just drain off the juice and eat it anyway because we like it so much!).

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