Jean's Summer Salad
My best friend Julie gave me this recipe after her mom Jean made it over the Fourth of July. Hence, why it is called Jean's Summer Salad. Easy recipe naming strategy moving forward.
I tweaked Jean's version a little bit -- swapped out celery for cucumbers and toasted the slivered almonds. Nothing drastic because Jean's recipe looked amazing. And Julie raved about how delicious it was for being so simple.
I made this on a Saturday morning for a birthday get-together I was headed to that night. It got rave reviews AND ended up being a saving grace when a vegetarian showed up. Very simple and what I love about it is that you can get all of your prep down while the wild rice and almonds are cooking.
- 1 cup wild rice, cooked and cooled
- 1 cup slivered almonds, toasted
- 2 cups sugar snap peas, trimmed and cut in half
- 1 cucumber, diced
- 5 carrots, shredded
- 1 green pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 red pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 orange pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 yellow pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 cup craisins
- 1 bunch scallions, chopped
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
To cook the wild rice: Place 1 cup wild rice and two cups water in rice cooker. Add pinch of salt. Cook for 45 to 50 minutes, until rice is tender. Don't have a rice cooker? Use a medium saucepan and cook it on your stove. 1 cup wild rice, 3 cups water and a pinch of salt -- bring to a boil, cover and lower heat to a simmer. The rice will take 45 to 60 minutes to cook.
While the wild rice is cooking, get the toasted almonds started. Using a small skillet, toast the slivered almonds over low to medium heat, stirring occasionally. The key to perfect toasted almonds? They should be golden brown and your kitchen should smell rich and toasty!
With the wild rice and the toasted almonds started, clean and cut all of your vegetables and place them in a large bowl. Add the craisins and scallions.
Once your almonds are golden brown, remove them from heat to cool. Same goes for your wild rice -- you want all of your cooked items to be cool before you add them to the salad bowl or some of your raw veggies will cook from the heat. Usually ends up a soggy mess. No good.
After the wild rice and almonds have cooled, add them to your large bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste and drizzle olive oil over top. Mix well, cover and put it in the fridge until it is ready to enjoy. Giving it some time to marinate lets the flavors develop better -- especially the scallions!
Bring as a dish to share to a barbecue or grill up some chicken or shrimp and make a whole meal out of it! I'm using the leftovers for lunch this week.