Rice Confetti Salad

Confetti Salad

A Keystone Home-meal Dish

Make from scratch or use planned-overs, or trade out the grains for pasta or potatoes. It’s a grain, it’s a pasta, it’s a potato salad and confetti will rain down on your table!

Serves 8-10 as side dish. Can easily be halved.

This is a truly serendipitous recipe. While demonstrating the creative possibilities in building entrée dishes from side dishes, I dropped a pot of boiling water with near disastrous consequences. After much clean-up and saving graces Joe Yarid, my assistant and I proceeded to create a memorable warm grain salad that could be served warm, room temp. or cold in any fine restaurant or covered dish event. The dressing is a Japanese-Mediterranean flavor bomb! — Recipe by B. Hettig

NOTES: For a colorful confetti effect, dice veggies uniformly to corn kernel size.

Pasta Confetti Salad

ALTERNATE STARCH: If you have cooked grains or macaroni plan on using 50-50 ratio of grain to confetti veggies. This will make a quick planned-over pasta confetti salad. If you have potatoes, boil or roast until tender and chop, then add veggies and dressing while still warm.

AS ENTRÉE COURSE: Fold in canned tuna, any variety of cooked beans, marinated tofu, diced ham at Step 3


RICE PREP:   Note, I also like combining with pearl barley for added texture

olive oil, 2 TBS

scallions, 1 cup, white part only, diced. Greens reserved for confetti veggies

sea salt, 1 tsp

brown rice, 2 cups

fresh corn niblets, 2 cups, [4-5 ears fresh], or frozen, or canned. If using canned or frozen, omit cooking and add after rice is cooked with confetti veggies

water, 4 cups


Confetti Salad

CONFETTI VEGGIES: Mix and match with other colorful veggies or planned-overs like green beans, beets, celery, carrots

bell pepper, orange, or yellow, 1 cup, diced

scallion greens, 1 cup (2-3), minced

cucumbers, 1 cup, diced

tomato, fresh, 1 cup, diced

fresh cilantro, 1/2 cup [or parsley], chopped to yield half cup

DRESSING: Also great on salads or as a sauce, so make it in larger batches

olive oil, 1/4 cup (extra-virgin is better)

sea salt, 1/2 tsp

lemon zest, 1 tsp grated

fresh lemon juice, 2 TBS, or lime juice

ume plum vinegar,* 3 TBS, find at natural food and Asian stores

SUBSTITUTIONS: If you have other veggies already cooked like broccoli or beets, add or substitute to create 4 cups of confetti blend.


COOK GRAINS:

1  Heat oil in a medium sized pot and add the rice and salt, sauté until rice begins to brown and become fragrant— about 5 minutes. Add the corn niblets* and water and bring to a boil.

*NOTE: if using canned or cooked cooked corn omit here and add with other veggies.

Stir once and cover. Simmer for 45 minutes. Then take off heat and without lifting lid, rest for 5 more minutes.

2   Meanwhile, prepare the confetti vegetables and make the dressing.

3   When rice is done pour into large mixing bowl. Add the confetti vegetables, chopped herb and enough dressing to evenly coat the mixture.

Serve warm, at room temperature or even cool. Even better later in the week.

FINAL NOTES: The dressing soaks into warm grains better. After a few days in the fridge, refresh with a squeeze of lemon juice. Also add in additional herbs: mint and/or basil to spice up the flavor.

I love topping with ground, roasted sesame condiment called “gomasio.” It adds a nutty and rounded taste at the table. Find recipe on site or contact me.

ume plum vinegar
Ume Plum Vinegar

* Ume plum vinegar is a Japanese condiment more like a sour brine, than a vinegar. It is a great kitchen staple and marries well to fried corn and soup dishes. It’s inexpensive and a key sauce helper in my kitchen.

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