This "Wild Rice Salad" is a really good change of pace from the usual salad offerings, especially during the holidays, but it's actually good anytime of the year. It's perfect for those who want a healthier alternative or something just a bit lighter. I love how colorful it is and it goes great with most main courses .Add some chopped chicken or turkey to it and serve it as a main course for lunch or a light supper. This is what you will need for this version:
2 (6.2 oz.) boxes of fast cooking long grain and wild rice with the seasoning packet (I used Uncle Ben's)
1/2 cup celery, sliced thin
1 bunch green onions, sliced thin including the green tops
1 cup dried cranberries (Craisins)
1 cup chopped walnuts, lightly toasted (could use pecans)
1/2 cup carrot, cut in matchsticks or grated
2 apples, unpeeled and diced
2 Tbs. lemon juice
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup apple cider or white balsamic vinegar
4 Tbs. honey
1 tsp. soy sauce
1 Tbs. dried parsley
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. celery salt
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. curry powder (optional)
Prepare the wild rice mixes according to the package directions, using the seasoning packets. Set aside to cool.
After the rice has cooled at room temperature a bit, mix with the celery, onions, dried cranberries, walnuts and carrot. Toss the diced apple pieces with the lemon juice. This keeps them from turning dark and the salad will last longer. Mix the apple in with the rest of the ingredients.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, honey, soy sauce, salt, celery salt, garlic powder, black pepper and the curry powder if you are using it. The curry powder is optional, because I find that curry is something you either really like or you hate. There is just not a middle ground. I will say that if you adding chicken to this, the curry makes it so good, but I happen to love the taste of curry!
Pour the dressing over the rice mixture and toss. Pour into a pretty salad bowl and serve at room temperature. Any leftovers are good after refrigeration also!
This is such a festive looking salad!