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Layered Fiesta Rice Salad

I was on BT this morning talking and cooking gluten-free in recognition of Celiac Awareness Month. I made a few recipes using rice – it’s gluten-free, of course, cheap, and one of the most easily digestible grains. Brown rice is even better for you, of course – leaving the bran intact keeps it higher in B vitamins, magnesium and fiber. Cook it the same way as white rice, allowing 40 minutes instead of 20.

This layered rice salad is very 80s, don’t you think? It’s easy to make and very portable – it won’t wilt or go soggy quickly – and the rice and beans make a nutritious, inexpensive complete protein. You could add meat if you like – some shredded roasted chicken or cooked shrimp would be perfect.

Bring the jar of cumin-scented lime dressing with you to shake and pour overtop right before you toss the salad and serve it.

Layered Fiesta Rice Salad

adapted from riceinfo.com

1 1/2 cups uncooked long grain brown or white USA rice
1/4 cup canola or olive oil
1/4 cup lime juice
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. honey
1 garlic clove, crushed
1/4 tsp. each salt and pepper
a few drops of hot sauce
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 ripe avocado, peeled and cubed
1 14 oz. (398 mL) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 mango, peeled and cubed
1 1/2 cups each corn kernels and diced tomato
1/2 cup chopped green onion
1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese
1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Cook the rice according to package directions. Spread evenly on a baking sheet to cool; fluff with a fork. In a jar, shake together the oil, lime juice, cumin, honey, garlic, salt, pepper and hot sauce.

Layer rice, red pepper, avocado, black beans, mango, rice, corn, tomato, green onion, cheese, and cilantro into a straight-sided, glass bowl or trifle dish, or divide among individual glass serving dishes. Drizzle with dressing and toss just before serving.

Serves 8.

(photo courtesy of USA Rice Federation!)

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