I really don’t know what came upon me when I insisted that our house needs a paint job and some renovations. Now we are in the thick of things and there is dust, paint, buckets, brushes, mops all over! This is also the birthday week here; both kids birthdays back to back. Daughter’s extra classes, son’s busy social calendar, my work…..whew!!! No, not easy….but the thought of freshly painted clean walls, refurbished couches alone makes me happy. 🙂
But no matter how crazy our schedules may be, we need to eat. One of my go to options for meals are salads…cool, refreshing, hearty, nourishing and yes, energizing! I like to use whole grains in my salads to make them robust. Also, these work beautifully as you can prepare them in the morning and pop in the refrigerator. While the flavors are happily “getting to know each other” and chilling, you can go about your day without worrying about dinner!!
Red rice is wonderfully nutty and flavorsome. Its a fabulous ingredient for salads. Though truth be told, we are very happy eating it with rajma or chicken curry or in risotto as well! It is unhulled or partially hulled rice with red husk. Its very high in fiber as it is unhulled. Fiber aids in slowing down the rate at which carbs are converted into blood sugar, thus keeping you fuller and satiated longer. This rice is also a great source of B vitamins, calcium, zinc and iron, and other nutrients apart from being rich in antioxidants.
And mangoes…one of the most popular tropical fruits. Everyone’s favorite, fresh and juicy and just soooo delicious. Ripe, unripe, sweet, sour, we love them anyways. High in Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E which is amazing for your eyesight, immunity and skin. Rich in antioxidants, great source of fiber, mangoes are alkaline in nature thus aid your digestive health. In my house, we eat them as is, cook them with dal, use them for making smoothies, frozen yogurts, popsicles, salsa and of course salads. I’m partial to using slightly sour mangoes in my salads, for that unique flavor and texture.
THE RECIPE: Serves 6 generously
Red rice – 200 gms ( preferably soaked for 15/20 mins), cooked & cooled
Corn – 1, boiled and scraped off
Green Onion – 2, finely diced
Cucumber – 1, deseeded and finely diced
Kakadi/Armenian Cucumber – 1, finely diced
Carrot – 1, finely diced
Capsicum – 1, finely diced
Mango – 1, diced
Sriracha Vinaigrette :
Lemon juice – 3 lemons
Red wine vinegar – 1 Tbsp
Sriracha sauce – 1 Tbsp ( more if you like)
Extra virgin Olive oil – 5 Tbsp
Salt & pepper to taste
Garnishings – Feta cheese, Goat Cheese, Sunflower Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds (optional)
Combine all the salad ingredients in a large bowl.
Put all the dressing ingredients in a small screw top jar and shake it vigorously.
Toss everything well, taste and adjust for seasoning; refrigerate till chilled.
Top with your favorite garnish and serve!