Brown Rice, Salmon & Asparagus Salad

With earthy flavours, this hearty brown rice and salmon salad in sweet citrus dressing is perfect dinner fare. Bring leftovers to work for a healthy, satisfying lunch.


INGREDIENTS

1 cup brown and wild rice blend or substitute all brown rice
2 cups water
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 cups shelled, frozen edamame
12 asparagus, trimmed (about 1 bunch)
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
4 (5-ounce) salmon fillets, skin on

Dressing
1 shallot, chopped
1/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced 1 tbsp. honey
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 tbsp. chopped chives
Orange zest, for garnish


PREPARATION

Add the rice to saucepan. Cover with 2 cups cold water and add a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook until rice is tender and water is absorbed, about 40 to 50 minutes, depending on the rice blend you are using. Let sit, covered, about 10 minutes. Fluff with fork.

While rice is cooking, prepare the rest of the ingredients for the salad. Add edamame to boiling salted water and cook until tender, about 4 to 5 minutes. Drain. Set aside.

Preheat grill to high. Oil grill.

Drizzle salmon and asparagus with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Add salmon and asparagus to grill. Reduce heat to medium high.

Grill salmon until opaque and just cooked through, about 3 to 5 minutes per side depending on thickness of fish. Grill asparagus until tender crisp, turning as needed, about 2 to 3 minutes.

Assembly
To make the dressing: add shallot, orange juice, balsamic vinegar, Dijon, garlic, honey and olive oil to a small bowl. Whisk to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Adjust seasoning and acidity to taste. Set aside.

Add rice and edamame to large bowl, toss with about 3/4's of the dressing.

Cut asparagus into 2-inch pieces and toss into salad. Break salmon into smaller pieces. Delicately, combine salmon and chives into salad. Drizzle salad with more dressing. Garnish with orange zest, if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature.



Yield: 4 servings.