Here’s a fresh, cool salad that makes a great side dish on a hot summer night…we seem to have no shortage of those around here lately! Rice salads are lovely change of pace from potatoes and pasta and they pair beautifully with simple grilled meats and vegetables. This one even makes a dent in the abundance of fresh herbs that is (hopefully) taking over your herb garden by now. This adaptation calls for basil, parsley and mint, but you could really use any herb you like to change up the flavor profile – lemon thyme comes to mind. I think some chopped scallions would be terrific in this. Enjoy!
Lemon Herb Brown Rice Salad
Adapted generously from Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution cookbook
1 cup long grain brown rice
1 teaspoon chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint
1 teaspoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
8 oz. jar roasted red bell peppers
1/2 fresh red chile pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 lemon (for zesting and 1 tablespoon of juice)
1. Cook brown rice according to package directions. Allow to cool completely spread out on a large rimmed cookie sheet.
2. While rice is cooking and cooling, wash, dry and chop the herbs. Drain and finely dice the roasted red peppers. Halve, seed, and finely dice the red chile. Set aside.
3. Zest the lemon and set aside zest. Squeeze lemon to get 1 Tbsp. juice. Whisk together olive oil and lemon juice.
4. Pour cooled rice into a large serving bowl. Add herbs, bell peppers, and chile. Add lemon zest and olive oil/lemon juice dressing. Mix well. Taste, and add salt and pepper if desired. Serve at room temperature.