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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

December 19, 2010: Mango and coconut rice salad

Hot on the heels of Cindy's icecream potluck, Lisa had us all booked in for a Christmas shindig at her place. I was craving some savoury goodies but couldn't really face much more time in the kitchen, so I decided to make a quick and easy salad from our new cookbook Plenty. As you'll have seen already, Cindy's sugar addiction knows no bounds and she stuck with sweets.

I ended up paying more attention to things like cauliflower tart, roast vegies, fried rice and mushroom pate than to this dish so I don't have too much to say about it. It was strongly flavoured, with loads of green herbs, delicious crispy onion bits and, of course, mango. The two rice varieties added a bit of heft, while the nuts and coconut some nice textural variety. We took a big pile of this to the party and ended up with almost nothing to take home, so I guess this meal can be classed as a potluck success. (Cindy ate the small scoop of leftovers the following day and said they were even better than the first time round - the rice had acquired a rich buttery flavour even though I'd subbed the original recipe's butter with olive oil.)

The potluck as a whole was fantastic - after a day of eating a diet comprised almost entirely of sugar, it was great to have such an array of wonderful, vegan savoury treats to lower the blood sugar a bit. Wonderful as well to spend a relaxed pre-Christmas afternoon with such a fantastic gang of people - we're looking forward to keeping the regular potlucks going in the new year.

Mango and coconut rice salad
(based on a recipe from Ottolenghi's Plenty)

150g basmati rice
50g wild rice
20 grams basil (preferably Thai basil, but we couldn't find any on a Sunday morning)
10g mint, roughly chopped
10g coriander, roughly chopped
2 spring onions, sliced finely
1 teaspoon chilli flakes
grated zest and juice of one lemon
2 small mangoes, cut into rough 2cm cubes
60g roasted, salted peanuts, roughly chopped
50g shredded coconut
2 tablespoons olive oil
25g crispy fried onion bits

Put the basmati rice in a saucepan with a dash of oil and a cup of water, along with a big sprig of basil (leave the whole thing intact). Bring to the boil, and then simmer, covered, until the water is absorbed and the rice tender (about 20 minutes). Discard the basil, and spread the rice out to cool.

Meanwhile, add 2.5 cups of water to the wild rice in another saucepan and simmer for 30-40 minutes, until the grains have started to open up and are nice and tender. Drain and cool.

Roughly chop the rest of the basil and combine it with all of the rest of the ingredients (excluding the crispy onion bits). Mix it all together gently and adjust the seasonings if necessary. Garnish with the crispy onion pieces.


  1. I only noticed the wild rice in this when I was eating it the next day, nice touch. Yum!

    I got Plenty for Christmas! So much good stuff in there, can't wait to start cooking.

  2. Great salad - there were a few dishes with rice so I think I got confused about if there was also rice in this salad or if it had been colonised by a neighbouring dish - but I remember enjoying the flavours

  3. Gosh, I love wild rice! And am easing myself back into an appreciation of coconut, so clearly I need to make this immediately :)