A few weeks ago when I wrote the Guide to the Best Fall Ever, I didn’t think that almost one month later, we would still be dealing with 80 degree days. To say Chicago has provided a fall let down of epic proportions would be the understatement of the year. I can count the number of good fall days we’ve had so far on one hand, the number of comfortable sweater days on one finger. For someone who lives for the chilly sweater weather of the season, it’s been nothing short of depressing. The one bright side to this weather is the extended summer produce season. Late batches of ruby red tomatoes, bright greens and more have dominated farmer’s markets and groceries stores making these salad recipes exceptionally timely. Today’s salad is one of my favorites thanks to its quick cooking and light yet balanced flavors. If fall has entered your neck of the woods and any of these ingredients are no longer available, substitute them with other in season vegetables.
I don’t know about you guys but this past week was insanity. I had two events for work over the weekend, one which spanned three days and another that spanned two. Yesterday I collapsed on my bed when I got home and slept for about 12 hours into the morning. When life gets nuts but you don’t want to order out for every meal, quick dinners are key. This particular recipe whips up quick and easy so that you spend less time worrying about dinner and more time getting things done or relaxing so you can conquer another day. It’s also filled with ingredients that make you feel good. When you order out on busy nights, the food can make you feel bloated, tired and lethargic. This particular recipe gives you energy, doesn’t make you feel like you’ve gained ten pounds and keeps you full for a while.
What are some of your go-to meals when life gets crazy? Tell me in the comments below.
Rice Salad with Spring Veggies
1 cup Water
1 cup Vegetable Stock
1 cup Wild Rice mix
1 bunch Asparagus, trimmed + cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup Snap Peas
¼ cup Red Wine Vinegar
¾ cup Olive Oil
1 pint Cherry Tomatoes, halved
1 tbsp. Basil, chopped
1 tsp. Each of Dill, Parsley and Chives, chopped
½ tsp. Oregano and Thyme, chopped
1.5 cups cooked Chicken, chopped
1 - Bring water, veggie stock and rice to a boil in a medium pot. Let simmer 20-25 minutes, covered until all of the liquid has been soaked up.
2 - Blanch the asparagus and snap peaks in boiling, salted water for 3-5 minutes. Drain and cool with cold water. Set aside.
3 - Vigorously mix together the red wine vinegar and olive oil. In a large bowl, combine the rice, veggies, herbs and chicken. Pour the vinaigrette over the mixture. Toss for a few minutes until veggies are well-combined and dressing is thoroughly incorporated. Serve.