April 28, 2012

Spinach Salad with Rice, Cherries & Goat Cheese

I rarely think of salads as meals in themselves, but the spinach salad I made for lunch today was perfect as a meal.  I think it helps to have multiple flavors within the salad, such as rice, dried cherries, goat cheese, toasted walnuts with a pomegranate-blood orange vinaigrette dressing.

I'm still working my way through Heidi Swanson's cookbook, Super Natural Every Day and this recipe is on page 70.  It can also be found on the website The Daily Meal.  Heidi's recipe calls for fresh cherries, which I bet tastes fantastic.  Since cherries aren't available here yet, I substituted dried cherries.

Spinach Salad with Rice, Cherries & Goat Cheese
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Ingredients (serves 4)
  • 1 cup whole grain rice
  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons blood orange olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons pomegranate balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 handfuls baby spinach
  • 3/4 cup dried cherries
  • 2/3 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • goat cheese, crumbled
  • In a large saucepan, bring vegetable broth to a boil. Add rice and bring back to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 35 minutes (or according to package directions). Remove from stove and let rest covered for 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salt to make dressing. Also, toast walnuts in a skillet over medium-heat, tossing every 2 minutes until the nuts are fragrant.
  • In a large bowl, combine hot rice, spinach, dried cherries and the walnuts. Toss, until combined.
  • Divide salad among four plates, then add goat cheese to each plate. Serve immediately.
Recipe adapted from: Super Natural Every Day - by Heidi Swanson.
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