this summer-to-fall transitional kale and wild rice salad with apples is brought to you in partnership with della rice.
‘member recently when i told you how our oven just gave up on life and we ordered a new one? well, HE’S HERE! and i’m just a little bit excited, if you couldn’t tell. (i don’t even think i told y’all how shortly after we ordered the new stove, we discovered that the broiler on the old one didn’t work at all. not even a little bit. just, nothing. so tomato slices with cheese and pine nuts on top that were destined for the broiler ended up on the grill. where the heat comes from the exact opposite direction. so, yeah…)
so far, all i’ve made in the new oven is about 20 minutes of terrible smells with the windows open and exhaust fan on full blast (don’t worry, those noxious odors are an indication of “normal operation”…) and a determination that perhaps our oven thermometer is a total piece of junk…
but there are muffins and biscotti and sheet pan dinners and bread and all the good things on the docket! only half of those are on today’s to-do list (time check: 4:30 pm) but i’m excited to get going and put this new guy through the paces (fingers crossed it’s the $3.97 thermometer that’s a mess and not the new $morethanthat oven!).
all of this to say, lately the safest meals to plan have been ones that involved the (relatively speaking more) reliable stove top. like kale and wild rice salad with apples. as the stove had not yet moved on to the point where i could not make a simple pot of rice (which, incidentally, just reminded me how only 2 of 4 burners worked on the stove at our last house… ::sigh:: what can i cay say, we fancy.), this salad has been perfect for this in-between summer and fall weather we’ve been having.
it’s filling, thanks to the rice, but not heavy, with a distinct nod towards fall with the apples, dried cranberries, and toasted pecans (which is, um, a combination i may or may not have just used in the broccoli salad with dried cranberries and almonds that i posted last week). and the dressing is my standard favorite (lemon + dijon + extra virgin olive oil), fancied up just a smidge with a splash of maple syrup and balsamic vinegar, so that we get to call our still-super-simple dressing, “maple vinaigrette”. so now we can all be as fancy as my shiny, new, all-the-(basic)-features-work stove and oven! hooray!
- 1 cup (170 g. / 6 oz.) della basmati and wild rice, see notes
- 1 bunch of tuscan kale (also known as lacinato or black kale, it’s the flatter leaf variety)
- 2 crisp, tart apples, cored and diced, see notes
- ½ cup (47 g. / 1 5/8 oz.) pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
- ½ cup (67 g. / 2 3/8 oz.) dried cranberries
- ½ cup (53 g. / 1 7/8 oz.) cheddar cut into tiny dice or coarsely grated
- 2 small shallots, minced
- ¼ cup (2 fl. oz. / 59 ml) extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- juice of half a lemon
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup, ideally grade B / grade A: dark color and robust flavor
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- combine all of the vinaigrette ingredients in a jar with a tight fighting lid or small mixing bowl. shake or whisk to combine. set aside.
- cook the basmati and wild rice according to the package directions. once it’s done cooking, spread it out on a rimmed baking sheet to cool.
- to prepare the kale, wash and dry thoroughly. fold a kale leaf in half so that the thick rib is on the outside and use a sharp knife to remove the rib. repeat with a few leaves then pile the leaves up and cut them crosswise into thin ribbons. repeat until all of the kale is trimmed and cut.
- put all of the kale into a large serving bowl. add about one third of the dressing and use your hands to massage the dressing into the kale for a minute or two. add the rest of the salad ingredients to the bowl, another third of the dressing, and toss well. taste to determine if you want to add more dressing; you may not need to use all of the dressing. serve immediately. because kale is so sturdy, leftovers keep well for a day or two in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
if you can’t find della basmati and wild rice, another wild rice blend may be used.
cortland apples are nice for salad because they are slow to brown after being cut. the lemon in the dressing also helps with this, though, so don’t feel obligated to use cortlands. the most important thing is to use an apple that you like.
as noted above, since kale is so hardy, this salad lasts quite well, for a dressed salad. i happily ate it for easy lunch leftovers for quite a few days. i wouldn’t serve it to guests after 24ish hours, but it was totally serviceable for quite a bit longer than that.
adapted from two peas & their pod’s kale and wild rice salad.
this post is brought to you in partnership with della rice. thank you for supporting brands i love to use in my kitchen; sponsored posts such as this help behind the scenes at tasty seasons! all opinions in this (and every) post are my own.