Wild Rice Salad with Blue Cheese

My kitchen cabinets are filled to the brim with rice, dried beans, wheatberries, and bulgur.  The truth is that I don’t use these ingredients very often.  For one thing, they’re not quick to prepare. The rice takes 45 minutes and all of the others need to soak, which can take anywhere from 10 minutes to overnight.  I’ve gotten it into my head that I don’t have the time for these items.  Which is not true at all.  I do have the time.  I just get lazy.

Last week, I decided to take the plunge and whip out one of those bags of wild rice that had been hiding in the dark corner of our pantry shelf for close to three years.  I’d been craving a hearty salad for lunch, which is something that happens often in the summer.  I could eat big bowls of chopped salad every day, but when it’s warm out, I can’t get enough.

This wasn’t a complicated dish to prepare.  I included some veggies for additional texture (and because, you know, they’re healthy) and then loaded it up with blue cheese (because if I’m going to have salad for lunch, there better be dairy in it).  And lots of fresh herbs, of course.

When it was finished, I carried the bowl and a big glass of sauvignon blanc to the table on our deck behind the apartment.  The gentle breeze, the food, a book in my hand.  I instantly got swept up in the moment. By the time I looked back down at the bowl, just a few grains remained.

There are still countless bags of rice and legumes that linger in those cabinets. It’s just taken this one dish to convert me. I’m ready to dig into the rest. 

Wild Rice Salad with Blue Cheese

serves 4-6

Ingredients

1 cup cooked wild rice

3 carrots, peeled and chopped

1 tomato, chopped

1 shallot, peeled and sliced thinly

Juice of 1 lemon

1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese

3 tablespoons parsley, roughly chopped

Salt and black pepper

Directions

1. In a bowl, mix together the wild rice, carrots and tomato.

2. In a separate bowl, add the lemon juice, blue cheese, parsley and shallot. Gently whisk, making sure to leave some chunks of blue cheese.

3. Pour dressing over wild rice mixture and stir to combine.

4. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

5. Let chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

6. Take the bowl out, let it come to room temperature, and serve.

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RosaJune 25, 2012 - 1:50 am

A splendid salad! So summery and tasty.

Cheers,

Rosa

JulieDJune 25, 2012 - 1:53 am

Wow, Brian. Love this…so simple & elegant at the same time!

foodwanderingsJune 25, 2012 - 8:14 am

Ooh I was just thinking making some grain or bean salads for the week and fall back into a good eating habit. Thanks for the inspiration.

MariaJune 25, 2012 - 8:31 am

I want this for lunch…and dinner!

MeetaJune 25, 2012 - 9:09 am

Love rice salads. This is awesome as it adds a gorgoeus flavor level wit the blue cheese!

Anushruti | DivineTasteJune 25, 2012 - 9:24 am

Looks awesome!

Alison @ Ingredients, Inc.June 25, 2012 - 9:46 am

This looks amazing! Bookmarked!!

meeshJune 25, 2012 - 11:26 am

i love this! dairy is definitely essential

Chez UsJune 25, 2012 - 11:36 am

My pantry is the same. I have bags of beans, grains and rice, that is really not too hard to cook. I have been cooking up a batch of beans when I am home for an entire day. Then I freeze them in 2 cup containers. Great for last minute meals, dips, etc…. Have also been playing with different grains to use in salads. Taking the time can be delicious.

I love the blue cheese in this salad … may have to whip one up while Mr. No Dairy is traveling this week. :)

Andrew FrishmanJune 25, 2012 - 11:43 am

Mnnn. . . I LOVES me some wild rice, especially when it’s been turned into a salad!

Arroz con pollo, Arroz con frejoles, Arro con todo. ¡Viva Arroz!

JuliaJune 25, 2012 - 2:16 pm

The hearty texture of the wild rice with the creamy pungent blue cheese, yum, whatta great combo!

Anita at Hungry CoupleJune 25, 2012 - 3:29 pm

This looks great and the type of food I like. I make a similar salad with feta cheese but I add cooked wheat berries. These dishes make such a great filling and healthy meal.

EileenJune 25, 2012 - 3:33 pm

Grain salads are one of my favorites for summer–especially because they’re good cold from the fridge. Love it!

BunkycooksJune 25, 2012 - 4:15 pm

These types of salads are so good for you and we should all be eating more of them. They are particularly nice in the summer with all the fresh fruits and veggies.

Barbara | Creative CulinaryJune 25, 2012 - 6:01 pm

I love wild rice and too often avoid it for the time element too. Maybe it doesn’t help that when I do make it I end up finishing off most of it WAY too soon.

I’m on a Cambozola kick…I’m so enjoying something ‘not as blue’ as bleu cheese but I’m game to try it with wild rice; I know I have some hidden in that valley of unknowns in the pantry!

Sylvie @ Gourmande in the KitchenJune 25, 2012 - 8:11 pm

A good book, good food and a glass of wine sounds like the perfect way to enjoy the evening.

JanetJune 25, 2012 - 8:15 pm

You are so right – have been wanting summer grain and rice salads myself but think too much time that I do not have. Then I make it and realize yes not that much time at all and totally worth it!
Thank you for the inspiration!

JoanneJune 26, 2012 - 6:38 am

I can be pretty lazy about the grains/beans in my cabinets as well and I really need to start using them up because I often forget they’re even there! The funny thing is that I can always cook them while I’m doing something else, like eating dinner or just sitting around, yet I always think they’re so onerous. Weird. Anyways, LOVE this salad! Definitely going to make it to use up some of my rice!

Rosie @ SweetapolitaJune 26, 2012 - 7:06 am

You definitely had me at “blue cheese,” but I am a rice lover. I could live on it, and when I’m home alone it’s all I eat! Well, that and dessert. Wild rice is something I never think to buy or make, though, but I will definitely give this recipe a try, Brian. I need all the help I can get when it comes to simple but flavorful savory dishes! Lovely as always. xo

SuesJune 26, 2012 - 7:14 am

The wild rice/blue cheese combination is SO appealing to me… And this is such a beautiful salad!

JeanetteJune 26, 2012 - 8:33 am

I love the sound of this wild rice salad. Whole grains often take longer to cook, so I’ve been using my rice cooker so I don’t have to stand over the stove (plus it keeps it warm if I make it ahead of time). I also make extra and store it in the fridge or freezer.

MonetJune 26, 2012 - 9:57 am

Ah, rice. I have a love/hate relationship with it. I love how it tastes, but like you, I’m not always thrilled with how long it takes to cook! I often consider buying steamed rice from Whole Foods…until I see the cost. 8 dollars a pound! This wild rice salad sounds just perfect though. What a lovely combination of textures and flavors. Thank you for sharing. I can’t wait to see you NEXT WEEK! xoxo

Jen @ Jen's Favorite CookiesJune 26, 2012 - 11:07 am

This looks beautiful! I’m always looking for salads that are not boring. I can’t wait to try this!

sippitysupJune 26, 2012 - 11:12 am

I think it is terrific that you used all wild rice. Too many “wild rice” dishes contain just a smattering of the stuff. GREG

Jen @ Savory SimpleJune 26, 2012 - 12:00 pm

A fabulous way to use wild rice!

Sneh | Cook RepublicJune 26, 2012 - 10:50 pm

You were right! So thoroughly nourishing. I love how fine all the ingredients are chopped except the carrot which really pops. I hear you on having a pantry full of wonderfully nourishing ingredients and the feeling you get that you should be cooking with them more often. Thanks for inspiring :-)

kankanaJune 27, 2012 - 12:20 am

I just moved from white rice to brown rice. Yet to try the wild rice but looking at this I don’t think, I can wait much long :)

CarolynJune 27, 2012 - 6:16 am

I’m with you! If salad is the meal, it needs dairy in it!

PeggyJune 27, 2012 - 6:26 am

I’m totally the same way with my dried pantry staples! I buy them and forget about them – but with a salad like this, I think I may have to bust some of them out =)

VeenaJune 27, 2012 - 9:21 am

Very interesting dish.. For sure I am going to try :-)

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Renee - Kudos KitchenJune 27, 2012 - 9:24 am

Hi Brian! I saw this on foodbuzz today and it totally caught my eye. I’m a fool for wild rice. I love how you added the carrots for texture and a wonderful pop of color. This recipe really has my mouth watering. I must try this!!!

Lora @cakeduchessJune 27, 2012 - 9:34 am

I was thinking about the time factor the last time I made wild rice a few months ago and have not made it since. Now after seeing your colorful salad I can’t wait to make it again. fabulous summer dish, Brian xx

DB-The Foodie StuntmanJune 27, 2012 - 12:53 pm

I love wild rice. It reminds me of Thanksgiving becajuse my grandmother use to use it in her stuffing recipe. Great way to use it and congratulations on making the foodbuzz Top 9!

Stacey @ Kitchen SerendipityJune 28, 2012 - 6:21 am

Guilty of the same when it comes to rice and legumes – and this sounds delicious and healthy and perfect for summer!

Marina@Picnic at MarinaJune 28, 2012 - 11:46 am

another salad yet to try. Brilliant! :)

Jacqueline @How to be a GourmandJune 29, 2012 - 3:57 am

Very nice take on a Salad dish. I too am a big fan of blue cheese in salads. Roquefort is my favourite and I often have it in a salad with bacon, baby spinach, avocado tomato and walnuts.

AlejandraJune 29, 2012 - 11:52 am

This is a great reminder to use some of the many (MANY) jars of grains in my pantry. I always buy then, but like you, rarely use them because they can be a bit slow. But I’m always happy when I finally do! This recipe inspires me!

amelia from ztatsylifeJune 29, 2012 - 12:47 pm

I feel your cupboard conundrum. Who know why, in the summer, I too feel the need to clean out the grains from my pantry: must be because I feel that I have to start the fall “fresh” and anew at the end of the summer. Plus it’s fun to “create” from lost ingredients. I JUST found a bag of beluga lentils that needs addressing!

Rachel @ Baked by RachelJune 29, 2012 - 3:51 pm

So simple and perfectly light for hot summer days!

MikeVFMKJune 30, 2012 - 3:09 am

Love this salad! You come up with the best vegetarian salads, Brian! We would devour that here.

Sommer@ASpicyPerspectiveJune 30, 2012 - 11:18 am

This looks like heaven. I love all the contrast in flavor and texture. :)

Becs @ Lay the tableJuly 3, 2012 - 3:34 pm

I love wild rice – I have wild red rice and I love the nutty flavour. I tried making a salad with it but I think the blue cheese in it would be SO much better!

MikeJuly 4, 2012 - 4:06 am

I always struggle with wild rice…your recipe sounds like a very good combination of flavors: gonna have to try it!

[...] For a change, let rice take center stage and leave the lettuce in the fridge with this Wild Rice Salad with Bleu Cheese {from A Thought For Food} [...]

[...] Wild Rice Salad with Blue Cheese – A Thought for Food [...]

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