31 Simple Dishes: #1 Rice Salad

I’m challenging myself to come up with 31 simple recipes, starting with rice salad as #1 because it’s the simplest of meals and perfect for the summer. My husband tells me that this was created and popularized in Italy in the 70s, which makes sense since that period coincides with more women joining the workforce.  Fortunately there’s no compromise in terms of health and taste. This was actually one of his favorite dishes growing up.


The ‘classic’ rice salad involves little time in the kitchen. All you have to do is cook arborio rice for about 20 minutes (throw it in boiling water, then drain and rinse with cool water; let it cool). Mix it with olive oil, mayonnaise, chopped olives, capers, ham, pre-cooked shrimp, peas and gruyere cheese. Add salt, pepper and a drizzle of lemon juice to taste.

On Sunday night, we made a huge batch recently but substituted ham and gruyere with langostino (sautéd with olive oil) and feta. We added fennel, red onions, capers, olives. We also sautéd red bell peppers and boiled eggs, so there was a little bit more cooking involved. When all was said and done, we ended up with enough delicious rice salad for three nights plus lunch at work.

If you do get bored of eating the same thing every night, this dish is easy to change up. On the second or third night, try adding tuna or chickpeas or another type of cheese.  The possibilities are pretty endless!


5 responses to “31 Simple Dishes: #1 Rice Salad

  1. Pingback: Simple Recipe #3: Vegetable Stir Fry « Oilandgarlic's Blog

  2. Pingback: Simple Recipe #4: Cauliflower And Caper Salad « Oilandgarlic's Blog

  3. Pingback: 31 Simple Recipes: Salads #5, #6 and #7 « Oilandgarlic's Blog

  4. Pingback: Simple Recipe #11: Black Bean And Cheese Burrito « Oilandgarlic's Blog

  5. Pingback: October 19: Learn A Few Recipes Really, Really Well | Oilandgarlic's Blog

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