Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Lentil & Black Rice Summer Salad

Happy Monday! I've been a nomad these past few weeks, but I'm back...for now at least :)

One of my favorite things about summer is the large array of summer salads that restaurants offer. In attempts to recreate my obsession of a salad from a vegetarian restaurant back in Shanghai, this dish actually became something else and became my very own...and it's better (shh I still love the other one though).

The great thing about salad making is that you are able to use what you have on hand. Mixing and matching various ingredients eventually allows you to find a favorite combination that you'll stick to for a long, long time. 

If you haven't got anything planned for Independence Day, this would be a great option!

1/4 cup black rice, dry
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp water
pinch of salt
1/2 cup lentils, cooked
1/3 zucchini, about 3 inches from tip
1/3 cucumber
1 small carrot
1/2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
dash of paprika
1/2 clove garlic, minced
salt, to taste
1/8 cup crumbled feta for topping

  1. Rinse the black rice thoroughly, until the water does not turn purple anymore. Bring the rice, salt, and water to a boil. Simmer for 8-10 minutes until the water is gone. Remove from heat. Take the lid off and place a clean dish towel over the pot. Let the rice sit for 10 minutes.
  2. In a medium bowl, toss together the rice and lentils. Place the bowl in a refrigerator
  3. Cut the zucchini and cucumber into 1/2 inch coins. Cut those coin pieces into fourths. Place the cucumber pieces into a mid-sized bowl. Put aside. Prepare a stove top grill for the zucchini pieces. Be sure to grill the zucchini pieces until a fork easily pokes through.
  4. As the zucchini is grilling, julienne the small carrot. Place the julienned carrot into the bowl with the cucumber. Take the grilled zucchini pieces and also place them into bowl with cucumber.
  5. In a small bowl, whisk together the apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, paprika, garlic, and salt. 
  6. The rice and lentil mixture should now be cold. Take the bowl out of the refrigerator and mix the cucumber mixture with the rice mixture. Take the garlic dressing and mix it into the cucumber-rice mixture. Top with feta. Refrigerate until served.
- This recipe serves 3-4 as a side dish.
- Do not over-grill the zucchini; the slight crunch makes it a bit more interesting
- My zucchini and cucumber were about 8 inches from tip to tip.

With love,


  1. Your blog is absolutely wonderful and inspiring!
    I will definitely return!

    /Loreli woods

  2. This sounds delicious! I've never has black rice, does it have a more distinct flavour than other rice varieties?
    I love your blog!


  3. Your pictures look so pretty and so summer inspired. Really love how fresh this salad sounds!

  4. I too love all the veggies of summer! Just had my first of the season tomato-cucumber-onion-pepper salad for lunch today, all from fresh garden veggies. So naturally delicious!

  5. Going through your blog is like personal torture! There are so many awesome food and the pictures make them look even more Yum! We need to meet up someday so you can treat me these(totally not being selfish). haha

    Glitter & Blush

  6. This salad looks fabulous! I love summer salads and the flavors sound wonderful and great photos :)

  7. awesome dishes.

    - Janine

  8. Fantastic dish Grace!! I love lentil salad but I never thought about adding rice! What an amazing idea! It looks fantastic! Perfect summer dinner!!
    xox Amy

  9. I can't remember when was the last time I eat black rice... now I just crave!!!!
    It's summer now here in Italy and I also into salad, couscous and quick food ;)

    take care. xoxo,Meg of Sweet Gala's

  10. Absolutely in awe of all the colors, flavors and textures in this salad!! yum :)

  11. Very nice Asian salad c: Looks so
    healthy as well! Xx

  12. LOVE lentils, especially in a salad. This looks like the perfect summertime lunch!


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