Red Rice Salad with Avocado and Grilled Corn

I have a list. Well, I have many lists, but in particular, I have a list for which recipes to post and when.

All bloggers have a list like that, right??

Well, the problem I find is that I cook way, way, WAY more than I post. Now because of this, my precious list is in constant flux. Seasonal dishes have to move down the list, waiting for their time to come around again because I just didn’t get to them.

And for that, I blame the Internet.

There are just too many recipes out there to try, and when you throw in all the cookbooks, magazines and trying to recreate meals you’ve had at restraints, it becomes a hell of a feat to create the weekly menu. We’ve spoken about this before.
Red Rice Salad with Avocado and Grilled Corn

That’s exactly what happened this week. I was supposed to post a yummy, go-to lentil salad that actually makes lentils look pretty, but Yotam struck again with his weekly column in The Guardian and I just had to try this red rice salad with grilled corn and other goodies. And then, once I had tried it, I had to post it. Immediately.

It. Was. That. Good.
Red Rice Salad with Avocado and Grilled Corn

This red rice salad is nothing short of amazing. It is perfectly balanced in both flavour and texture, and is great both warm for dinner and cold the next day for lunch – if you are lucky enough to have leftovers. And the dressing… Just yum.

I’m sharing this salad with the happy revellers at Fiesta Friday #89 and this week’s co-hosts, Angie @The Novice Gardener, Mila @Milk and Bun and Kaila @GF Life 24/7. There will be extra dressing for all who link up to the party!

Red Rice Salad with Avocado and Grilled Corn

  • Servings: serves 4 to 6
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Red Rice Salad with Avocado and Grilled Corn

Ingredients

  • 150g Camargue red rice
  • 1 large red onion (peeled, quartered and the individual layers separated)
  • 1 tablespoon groundnut oil
  • Salt
  • 2 corn cobs (peeled if in husks, trimmed and cleaned)
  • 6-7 spring onions (trimmed)
  • 150g edamame beans (blanched for 30 seconds and drained)
  • 80g snow peas (cut diagonally)
  • 2 medium avocados (peeled and stoned just before serving, then cut into 2cm dice)
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds (toasted, to serve)
  • 15g coriander leaves (optional)
  • 1 lime (cut into wedges, to serve)

For the dressing

  • 1½ tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • ¾ teaspoon caster sugar
  • ½ teaspoon flaked chilli
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted
  • 3 tablespoon groundnut oil
  • ¾ teaspoon sesame oil

Method

  1. Fill a medium saucepan with plenty of water and place on a high heat. Once boiling, add the rice and cook for 25 minutes, until soft but still retaining a bite. Drain, refresh under cold water, set aside in a colander to dry, then transfer to a large bowl.
  2. While the rice is cooking, use a freestanding or hand-blender to blitz all the dressing ingredients with a quarter teaspoon of salt until smooth and thick, then set aside.
  3. Put a ridged griddle pan on a high heat and ventilate your kitchen. In a medium bowl, mix the onion with the oil and a quarter teaspoon of salt. When the pan starts to smoke, add the onion and cook for four minutes, turning over every 30 seconds, until the individual leaves are soft and charred all over, then transfer to the rice bowl.
  4. Lay the corn cobs on the griddle and cook for six minutes, turning them every minute or so, until charred on all sides. Remove from the heat and, once cool enough to handle, hold each cob upright on a board and use a sharp knife to shave off the kernels in clumps. Add these to the rice bowl.
  5. Lay the spring onions in the griddle and cook for six minutes, turning them over often, until charred and smoky all over. Remove from the heat, chop into 5cm-long pieces and add to the bowl.
  6. When you’re ready to serve, add the snow peas and avocados to the bowl, pour over the dressing and toss Serve in individual portions, sprinkling each with sesame seeds and picked coriander, if you like, with a lime wedge on the side.

Note: Yotam tosses the salad very gently; preferring to not have the ingredients completely evenly distributed. Apparently I need to work on this… Otherwise, toss the whole thing into one mixed salad and serve.

Recipe from Yotam Ottolenghi’s column in The Guardian.

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Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Fig Topped Spinach Tortillas

There’s no better way to celebrate another Meat Free Week than by posting a recipe by the men who made vegetables fashionable: Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi.

There is also no more arguing that autumn is now truly upon the other half of us. The weather has changed, the wind’s turned cool, which for the moment, is a lovely change to the sweltering and humid winds of the past season.

And with autumn comes the next wave of figs. Beautiful, sweet, slightly funky tasting figs.

Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Fig Salad

It truly is the fig’s presence in the Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Fig Salad that is served at Ottolenghi that ties the whole dish together. Oh, and the balsamic reduction. Notice it missing from the photo?? Trust me, you do not want to forget the glaze!

As I was serving this salad for dinner, and only this salad, I knew we’d need a little crunch, or should I say, a little carbs. For better or worse, I turned Yotam and Sami’s beautiful salad into a pizza/tortilla/wrap topping of sorts. But it worked! The crispiness of the spinach tortilla was a welcome texture on the plate. It also became a spoon to scoop up all the veggie goodness; and to mop up the sticky globs of balsamic reduction.

So, with only a few days left, go experiment with veggies and grains and enjoy Meat Free Week 2015.

And don’t forget to come and celebrate at Fiesta Friday’s new hangout that Angie @The Novice Gardener was so nice enough to create for us. Her co-hosts this week are Selma @Selma’s Table and Margy @La Petite Casserole so you know it’s going to be a great party.

Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Fig Topped Spinach Tortillas

  • Servings: Serves 4 to 6
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Roasted Sweet Potato and Fresh Fig Salad

Ingredients

  • 4 small sweet potatoes (1kg in total)
  • 75ml olive oil (divided)
  • Maldon sea salt and black pepper
  • 40ml balsamic vinegar
  • 20g caster sugar
  • 12 spring onions (halved lengthways, cut into 4cm segments)
  • 1 red chilli (thinly sliced)
  • 4 to 6 spinach tortillas
  • 6 fresh and ripe figs (240g in total, quartered)
  • 150g soft goat’s cheese (crumbled, optional)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 240°C.
  2. Wash the sweet potatoes, halve them lengthways and then cut each again similarly into 3 long wedges. Mix them with 3 tablespoons of the olive oil, 2 teaspoons of salt and some black pepper.
  3. Spread the wedges out on a baking sheet, skin-side down, and cook for about 25 minutes until soft but not mushy. Remove them from the oven and set aside to cool down to room temperature.
  4. Meanwhile, to make the balsamic reduction, place the balsamic vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 2-4 minutes, or until it thickens. Be sure to remove the pan from the heat when the vinegar is still runnier than honey; it will continue to thicken as it cools. Stir in a drop of water before serving if it does become too thick to drizzle.
  5. Heat the remaining oil in a medium frying pan and add the green onions and chilli. Fry them over a medium heat for 4-5 minutes, stirring often, making sure not to burn the chilli, and then spoon the oil, onions and chilli over the sweet potatoes.
  6. On a medium heat, cook the tortillas on both sides until just crispy in the same frying pan used to cook the green onions and chilli. Set aside and cover with foil until ready to serve.
  7. Divide and arrange the sweet potato and chilli mixture on top of each tortilla. Dot the figs among the wedges and then drizzle over the balsamic reduction. Serve at room temperature with the cheese crumbled over, if using.

Recipe from Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi.

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