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*Wild Rice Spectacular*

Posted Dec 03 2010 8:37pm
If you're unsure what wild rice is, I invite you to embark on a new tasty side dish or vehicle for a great entree! Wild rice is a yummy, nutty flavored, sweeter rice that embarks a truly sensual taste. It is actually a member of the grass family, and not the rice, but looks and feels just like other rices.

I recently bought a box, a very small box I might add, of all natural wild rice. Not the wild rice blend, which is sold by many standard commerical brands, but a natural brand. This is just the rice and I was skeptical of buying it, but in attempts to add more whole grains to my diet besides quinoa and the standard oatmeal, I decided to give this very popular, healthy option for rice a try. White rice is definitely out, and I'm not a huge fan of brown rice, so I dug up a yummy recipe for wild rice instead.

Wild Rice Spectacular

Serves 2 - 1 cup servings

1 small box of natural wild rice
1 cup of sliced almonds
1 cup of finely chopped onions
1 cup of finely chopped celery
coarse ground black pepper
rubbed sage
optional : 1/2 cup mushrooms slices

1. First, rinse the rice in a colander and then add the whole box to a large pot covered with 2 cups of water and 1 tbsp. Earth Balance. Bring to a boil and then turn to low. Place the lid on and let it cook for 15 minutes on low with the lid on.

2. Meanwhile, saute the onions and celery in a small skillet sprayed with nonstick spray.
Sprinkle with a little rubbed sage and black pepper. Add 1 tbsp. Earth balance butter spread. Stir to combine with a spatula or wooden spoon.

3. When the onions start to carmelize and turn a little brown ( about 15 minutes), turn off the heat. Be sure to stir constantly to prevent sticking. Sit aside.

4. After the rice has finished cooking, turn off the heat, and let it sit away from the stove covered, for 5 minutes.

5. Lastly, saute the mushrooms in a seperate pan for 3-4 minutes if you are using them. Add to the celery and onion mixture to combine in the pan, and stir into the wild rice.

6. Add sliced almonds or slivered almonds to stir in last.

*This dish is so great. I made it for Thanksgiving as a version of a healthier dressing. The flavors of the black pepper with the savory tastes of the onions and celery really compliment each other well. When combined with the sweet but crunchy almonds, it would be a great dish for the upcoming Christmas holiday!!

Next time, I think I'll add some raisins or cranberries for a holiday version!

DID YOU KNOW? Wild rice is rich in B vitamins, magnesium, potassium and niacin. All of these nutrients provide electrolyte balance, nerve maintenance and are crucial for energy production.

Have a great day and get cooking!:)
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