This dish is a refreshing summer salad, which can be also used as a side dish to accompany fish or meat.
If there are some ingredients you don’t care for, leave them out or substitute with any you prefer.
You could adjust the amount or use a different dressing and spices to your taste. I made this salad with Israeli Toasted Perl Couscous, Bulgar wheat and other grains and pastas. The Lemon-Saffron dressing is also very delicious for roasted new potatoes salad.
For the Lemon – Saffron dressing
• White part of 6 scallions, chopped
• 1/2 cup dry white wine
• 1/2 cup chicken stock
• 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
• Zest and juice of 1 large lemon
For the salad
• 1 cup Whole Grain rice, cooked in chicken stock
• 1 Red bell pepper cut in 1/4-inch long strips
• 1 Yellow or Green bell pepper cut in 1/4-inch long strips
• 2 medium carrots, cut in thin matchsticks pieces
• 2 large plum tomatoes, cut in 1/4-inch long strips
• 6 Scallions, white and green chopped separately (reserve the white part for the dressing)
• 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
• 1/2 cup Kalamata petted olives (in brine with extra virgin olive oil) halved lengthwise
• 1/2 cup frozen peas thawed (optional)
• 1/2 cup golden raisins soaked in warm water and drained (optional)
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
• 1/2 cup fresh parsley and mint leaves coarsely chopped
In This Recipe
To make the dressing:
Combine white part of scallions, dry white wine, chicken stock and saffron in a small saucepan.
Simmer sauce over medium heat until reduced to about 3/4 cup, 8 to10 minutes.
Cool to room temperature, mix-in lemon zest and juice.
Cover tightly and refrigerate if preparing ahead.
To make the salad:
In a large mixing bowl combine all prepared vegetables, add olives and raisins, salt and pepper; gently mix in rice, herbs and the Lemon Saffron Dressing just until well mixed.