RICE AND GRAIN SALADS
Rice and grain salads are versatile, forgiving and a great way to empty your refrigerator.
o Cook any grain you like (pearled barley, bulgur, farro, millet, quinoa, brown, red or white rice, rye berries, spelt or wild rice) or use leftover precooked grain languishing in your fridge, more than one kind if you’re so inclined.
o Chop a roughly equal amount of sturdy vegetables that are good raw and won’t disintegrate quickly (bell peppers, carrots, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, fennel, green beans, radishes, or sugar snap peas) and add them to your grains.
o If you are planning to use the salad as a main course, bulk it up with beans, cheese (feta or little mozzarella balls), chicken, shrimp, tofu or some other protein. The additions should total about half of the amount of grain. Or, if you want to use the salad as a side, keep it light with vegetables alone.
o Mix your favorite vinaigrette, a boldly flavored one rather a dressing with delicate flavors. Add it to the salad, toss thoroughly and serve. Or, pack the dressed salad up and return it to the fridge, where it will remain without becoming mushy for at least a day. That means it can be made in advance for home entertaining, or provide a portable feast for picnics or office