Brown Rice Salad With Kale and Pomegranate

Autumn, Salad, Vegan, vegetarian, Wheat Free

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I am just going to come right out and say this: I hate cauliflower. I don’t like anything about it, not the texture (ohh wretched squeakiness), the color (um is it supposed to look dirty?) and the flavor…? Well I don’t know, texture trumps flavor for me, so I can’t get past that, but I certainly don’t feel that I am missing anything flavor-wise by not eating this bumpy blemished vegetable.

One of the funny things about being a non-meat eater is that people expect you to like all vegetables. And I do really like most of them, I even love some vegetable (eggplant, you sexy,silky thing). But I just can’t get on board with cauliflower, and while we’re at it, brussels sprouts (equally vile with the added effect of making my kitchen stink for at least 24 hours). Luckily, no one ever says, ‘damn this is really good, but it would be so much better with some cauliflower’. So when I came across this Winter Tabbouleh recipe in the newest Gourmet cookbook, Gourmet Today I decided to just ignore the cauliflower all together.

I actually made quite a few changes to this recipe and I think it came out pretty darn deliciously. I ended up using short grain brown rice instead of bulgur, using the recipe from my perfect brown rice post . Also, the original recipe called for belgian endive but when I went to the market all the endives looked sad and brown, so I opted for purple kale and made sure to chop it very, very small, since it stays uncooked in the dish. The dressing for this salad calls for pomegranate molasses, an ingredient I used and discussed in my recent Muhammarah post. It’s really good stuff, and very versatile but if you cannot find any in your area, you can substitute some red wine vinegar and a teaspoon or two of something sweet, like sugar or agave nectar.

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Brown Rice Salad With Kale and Pomegranate– heavily adapted from Gourmet Today’s Winter Tabbouleh

for the salad

One recipe of perfect brown rice, cooled

1 medium fennel bulb, stalks discarded, chopped finely

1 small bunch purple kale, tough stems discarded, leaves chopped very finely

1/3 cup chopped flat parsley

2 Tbs chopped fresh mint

1/3 cup chopped walnuts

seeds from one large pomegranate

3/4 tsp fine sea salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

for the dressing

1 garlic clove minced

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

3 Tbs pomegranate molasses

1 Tbs water

1/4 tsp fine sea salt

pinch of pepper

6 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

Stir all salad ingredients together well in a large bowl.

In a small bowl or liquid measuring cup, stir the garlic, cinnamon, molasses, water, sea salt and pepper together until combined. Then whisk in the oil until emulsified. Dressing will be tart- add a 1/2 tsp of sugar if desired.

Toss the salad with the dressing and let sit for 30 minutes before serving, if possible.

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