Black Bean, Rice, and Cilantro Salad
|Black Bean, Rice, and Cilantro Salad is one of my all-time favorites.|
This recipe is one I created about 15 years ago when my friends Jeanne Zeigler and Kip Greene got married. In those days I called it Jeanne’s Wedding Salad and it was a big hit with clients at Lake Powell, back when I was catering houseboat trips. This isn’t a quick recipe, but it’s ultra delicious, and I still have friends who request it for parties. Now that I’m eating the South Beach Diet way, I made the salad lower on the glycemic index by adding a bit more veggies and using Uncle Ben’s Converted rice, which is the lowest glycemic index type of white rice. For the special occasion we’re celebrating, I’m renaming it My Favorite Herb Salad.
It was in December of 2005 that I officially declared cilantro as my very favorite herb. That was Weekend Herb Blogging #9, and now, forty-three more weekends have gone by and cilantro is still my favorite. Even though cilantro is undoubtedly the most controversial herb, I’ve loved it since the first time I tried it. Wikipedia claims the way the taste of cilantro is perceived and the resulting love or hate relationship people have with the herb may be due to genetics. If so, I have the cilantro gene.
In fact I can only think of two bad things about cilantro. (1) I can’t seem to grow it at all in my garden, which means I don’t get to use it as often as other herbs . (2) It doesn’t keep well in the refrigerator. Both of those are obstacles to cilantro consumption which can be easily overcome, as I’ve proven with a lot of cilantro-loving recipes. You can see some of my favorites in a minute, but for the one year anniversary of Weekend Herb Blogging, it seemed like a new recipe was in order.
My Favorite Herb Salad or Black Bean, Rice, and Cilantro Salad
(8-10 servings, recipe created by Kalyn, for South Beach Diet this would be phase two for a small serving or phase three if it was the main part of the meal)
2 cups Uncle Ben’s Converted rice (for South Beach diet) or Basmati Rice
1 T fresh lemon juice
4 C chicken stock or canned chicken broth
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained well (or use 2 cups cooked beans)
2 red peppers, chopped in 1/2 inch pieces
1 green pepper, chopped in 1/2 inch pieces
1 yellow pepper, chopped in 1/2 inch pieces
(use any combination of colors)
1/2 cup chopped green onions (scallions)
1 cup (or more!) finely chopped cilantro
1/3 cup peanut oil or vegetable oil (not olive oil)
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1 T red wine vinegar
1 T ground cumin
1 T Worcestershire sauce
1 T Spike seasoning
1 tsp. chile powder
1/2 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
Put canned beans in a colander and rinse well until no foam remains. Let beans drain while you cook the rice, chop ingredients and prepare dressing. (If they still seem wet, blot dry with paper towel. Beans you cook yourself are great if you have the extra time. You need 1 – 2 cups cooked beans.)
In heavy pan with a tight-fitting lid, bring chicken stock and lemon juice to a boil, stir in rice, bring back to a boil, then cover and cook on very low heat for 25 minutes without lifting lid. After 25 minutes, check to see if all water is absorbed. As soon as the bottom of the pan doesn’t have any stock remaining when you stir the rice, turn off heat and let rice sit about 10 minutes. Then remove lid and let rice come to room temperature before proceeding with recipe. (It can be cooled in refrigerator if you’re in a hurry.)
Mix dressing and chop peppers, green onions, and cilantro while rice cools. When it is room temperature, combine all ingredients and chill 1-2 hours before serving. this will keep fairly well in the refrigerator for a day or two, but it probably won’t last that long.
More reasons to vote for cilantro:
Very simple to make, and one of my most photogenic cilantro recipes is Asian Cucumber Salad with Cilantro and Vidalia Onions.
Chicken, Black Bean and Cilantro Soup was the recipe I made for the WHB post where I first declared my love for cilantro. I’ve made this for a number of New Year’s Day soup parties, and it’s always been a hit.
When there was a block party on my street, I made Black Bean and Pepper Salad with Cilantro and Lime. This recipe was inspired by My Favorite Herb Salad, and would be a phase one option for South Beach Dieters.
Grilled Fusion Chicken is a dish where cilantro is not the main thing going on, but if you’re a cilantro fan like me, you’ll love the way the cilantro compliments the flavor of this chicken.
Tomorrow night is when we announce the most preferred herb and officially recap Weekend Herb Blogging #52. If you’re a food blogger who wants to particpate in the special event, you still have time. Send your link to kalynskitchen AT comcast DOT net by 3:00 on Sunday.
Not a food blogger or don’t have time to post about your favorite herb? No problem, just leave a comment telling what your favorite is and we’ll add your vote to the tallies. Now, here’s how it’s going:
Favorite Herb Tally Update
(I’ll probably stop udating this count after today so it doesn’t ruin the surprise on Sunday.)
2 3 4 6
2 3 4 6 79 11
1 2 3
1 2 3
1 2 3
lemon verbena 1
Greek bay laurel 1
salt and pepper (they know it’s not an herb) 1
catnip 1 (from Sher’s cat)