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Southwest rice salad--come home to dinner after the fair

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Before you head out for a long, hot day of goats, pies, and fried cookie dough at the Minnesota State Fair, run by the grocery and pick up the makings for this filling and crunchy salad (ok, it has a lot of vegetables) and stick it in the frig. You'll be surprised how good it tastes after a long day of walking. Lunch the next day? You're covered; this keeps a few days if you'd like to make extra. It's also a good use of leftover rice, boiled corn, or grilled vegetables from the weekend. You might eat one less chocolate-dipped jalapeno ice cream cone (I made that up--) knowing this goodie's waiting for you.

Southwest Rice and Bean Salad serves 4

  • 1 cup cooked rice
  • 1/2-2/3 cup cooked pinto or black beans (drained and rinsed if canned)
  • 2 cups chopped, cooked green vegetables (green beans, zucchini, etc.)
  • 1/2 cup cooked corn
  • 1/4 cup chopped bell pepper, any color
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 t jalapeno, minced (or a big pinch of crushed red pepper)
  • 4 green onions, sliced thinly and divided (Save one for garnish.)
  • Juice of one lime
  • 2-3 T olive oil (plus a little extra)
  • 1/2 t kosher salt; 1/4 t freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)
  • Optional--Pinch of chili powder
  • Optional-- You can add extra protein: Try 12 grilled shrimp or 1/2 cup cubed cheddar or 1 c shredded chicken
  • Sliced tomatoes and diced ripe avocado

In a large bowl, mix all ingredients together. Taste and adjust seasonings. Add a bit more olive oil if the salad seems dry. Garnish with reserved sliced green onions. Store tightly covered in refrigerator for 2-3 days. (Eat immediately if using shrimp or leftover meat.) Serve with sliced tomatoes and diced avocado.

For more info:

FAQ for the Minnesota State Fair

The Food at the Fair for 2011

What else to do around town

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