I threw together this grain salad for our Mother’s Day dinner last night, and it was worthy of writing down! Besides this, my brother- and sister-in-law treated us to some amazing grilled pork, zucchini and peppers, a tossed romaine and pine nut salad, and my favorite, grilled haloumi cheese. If you haven’t had the haloumi yet, you MUST try it this season.
I’m also gearing up for the first ever Food Revolution Day this Saturday May 19th! I’ll be attending the Slow Food Austin pot luck brunch, so it’s time to figure out another quick and tasty dish to bring along with me. I can’t wait to see what everyone else brings, too.
Mother’s Day grain salad with green beans, chickpeas and cranberries
1 cup cooked brown rice, preferably chilled or leftover
1/3 cup dry bulgur wheat
1 lb green beans, trimmed and cut in half
1 can chickpeas, drained
1/2 cup dried cranberries
2 bunches basil, chopped
For the dressing:
1 clove garlic
6-8 black peppercorns
juice of one lemon
2 tsp tahini sesame paste
1/4 cup walnut oil
2 tbsp olive oil
1. Bring 2/3 cup water to boil in a small pan. Add the bulgur wheat, turn off the heat and cover. Let sit for 30 minutes. (note: if you don’t have cooked brown rice handy, you can increase the bulgur wheat to 3/4 cup and the water to 1 1/2 cups)
2. Bring a pot of water to boil, and blanch the green beans for about 2 minutes. Drain in a colander or cool in an ice bath or cool running water. Set them out on a kitchen towel and let dry off a bit.
3. Make the dressing: start by mashing the clove of garlic, about 1/2 tsp kosher salt, and peppercorns in a mortar and pestle. Add in the lemon juice, tahini and oils and whisk together until well blended.
4. Toss the bulgur, rice, green beans, chickpeas and cranberries together with the dressing, and add in the basil. The salad tastes great chilled after a few hours, but you could have it right away, too.