I enjoyed Black Rice & Quinoa Salad so much, I made it twice last week: once for our family’s dinner and again over the weekend for the Missouri Mycological Society Winter Luncheon event. This potluck is attended by many mycophiles that also happen to be incredible epicureans, making this annual luncheon an all out food fest with unusual soups, side dishes and desserts- enough to make any foodie giddy. I thought this group would enjoy the black rice and quinoa dish, so that’s what I decided to bring.
The two main ingredients of this recipe (black rice and quinoa) are some of the healthiest ingredients you can find. Black rice is a whole grain, rich in iron and fiber, vitamin E, zinc and copper. The rice is not actually black, but rather dark reddish purple. Its gorgeous hue comes from a plant substance called anthocyanin, a strong antioxidant also giving the dark red/blue/purple color to berries, red grapes, red onions, red cabbage and purple potatoes. When the black rice is mixed with the quinoa and other ingredients in this recipe, it imparts a gorgeous purplish color to the rest of the dish.
Quinoa is quick and easy to prepare and super nutritious. Quinoa is a whole grain (technically a seed), rich in protein, magnesium, manganese, folate, and riboflavin. There is a ton of research suggesting the nutrients in quinoa can be a factor in lowering risk for diabetes, heart disease, gallstones, asthma, breast cancer and migraines.
As an added bonus, this dish is vegan and gluten free so those with more restrictive diets can even enjoy it.
Black Rice & Quinoa (recipe adapted from Bon Appetit Nov 2011 issue)
½ cup black rice (if cannot find, sub in brown, white or even wild rice)
1 cup quinoa
2 bay leaves (Herbs in Route)
3 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion minced (Yellow Wood Farms)
3 garlic cloves minced
2 tsp. ground cumin
3 Tbsp. lemon juice
¼ cup chopped cilantro and parsley
2 chopped scallions
salt & pepper
1. In a saucepan, boil rice in 1 cup water; cover, reduce heat and cook about 25 minutes until liquid absorbed.
2. In a separate saucepan, heat dry quinoa for 1-2 minutes to toast. Add 2 cups water, bay leaves, and a pinch of salt to boil; cover, reduce heat and cook about 15 minutes. Remove from heat, let stand about 10 more minutes, discard bay leaves.
3. In a skillet, heat olive oil on medium; add chopped onion & garlic, sauté about 5 minutes. Add cumin, cook about 1 minute more.
4. Combine onion mixture with quinoa, add rice, lemon juice, a drizzle of additional olive oil. Mix in cilantro, parsley, and scallions. Season with salt and pepper to taste.