Black Rice is not Wild Rice, and not Brown Rice. Black Rice is a dense chewy rice when cooked, that is typically more flavorful than Brown Rice. Black Rice is typically grown in the Northern US and Canada, along the borders of the Great Lakes.
Black Rice is a source of anti-oxidants http://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/pressroom/presspacs/2010/acs-presspac-… and is nutritionally dense. Of brown, red and black rice, it is not the highest in anti-oxidants http://nutritionfacts.org/video/brown-rice-vs-black-rice/
The two most popular versions of Black Japonica Rice are sold in Oklahoma City under the brands of Grey Owl which commemorates a First Nations Canadian naturalist and author http://www.greyowlwildrice.com and Lundberg http://www.lundberg.com/products/rice/packaged_rice/Black_Japonica™.aspx. Either version of Black Rice is as a free standing product : vegan, Kosher, gluten free and Non-GMO.
Black rice takes a little longer to cook than others.
So 2 cups of water over 1 cup of Black Rice, lightly salting the water. Bring to a rolling boil in a sauce pan and reduce heat, cover lightly and boil for at least 20 minutes… until al dente. Watch the pot so the pan does not scorch. Remove the pan from the heat and let the rice sit to absorb the remaining water. (Black rice creates a deep purple black water, which is exotic and exciting to some and disturbing to others. Because of this inky-ness the water is not used for other things once the rice is done… it is merely drained off.)
The rice can then be directly made into a warm salad, or the rice can be chilled and used another time.
Some people prefer to have a blend of rice, finding the Black Rice only too stout…
Flower Garden Park District Black Rice Salad
In a glass or ceramic mixing bowl, as far as the night before planning to serve place 1 to 2 cups of cooked rice.
Then add mayonnaise or greek yogurt, as much as 1 to 1.5 cups ( add as needed to bind all ingredients)
1tsp ground cayenne pepper or more to taste ( this spice afterbite carries the salad, so I am pretty liberal with this)
1/2 c each chopped green and red bell pepper
1/2 c shredded carrots ( don’t use julienne, too crunchy) Save some for a garnish.
Mix this well and just prior to serving
1 -2 cups chopped Cure 81 Ham ( some people rinse and pat dry to reduce sodium) or Prosciutto ham.
1 can of drained Mandarin Oranges chilled OR 1 cup Cantaloupe OR 1 cup Mango OR 1 cup Papaya or 1 cup Raspberries. The Mandarin is actually the best balance.
(The temptation to use fresh in season is certainly noted, and Cantaloupe with the Prosciutto is a dream with or without the cayenne. You could wrap this …. in bite sized pieces and serve atop the rice/veg mix. Hmmm. )
Fold in the meat first and check seasonings. Then gently fold in the fruit, which will break easily otherwise.
Prepare a tray or salad bowl by lining with your preferred salad greens, baby spinach works well.
Top with this mixed, well chilled salad, top with shredded carrots.
This recipe makes enough for about 4-6 single servings. If this were the sole dish, could serve 2-3.
Vegan or vegetarian substitutions are easy enough.
Turkey doesn’t work so well and Honey Baked Ham is too sweet for this recipe.
FGPD is Flower Garden Park District, a casual intown neighborhood in Oklahoma City comprised of artists, internationals and vintage homes looking to improve the quality of life through simple community rituals and sharing… one of which is food.