Cold Rice Salad

ADVOCATE-TESTED RECIPE

Cold Rice Salad

Serves 6. Recipe is from Elise Schlesinger Kaufman, who wrote, “This recipe is a take on one of Lee Barnes’ best! Lee had a great cooking school on Maple Street in New Orleans where I attended classes in the 70’s. The first time I had this rice salad was at an event at Naomi Marshall’s Madewood Plantation in Napoleonville. Lee was very generous in sharing her recipes. This is one of my husband Charlie’s favorites, especially in the summer. I like to serve it with grilled flank steak or fish. You could substitute shrimp for the chopped ham or turkey ham. I now substitute peppadews, which can be found at the Whole Food’s olive bar, for the pimentos.”

2 cups raw rice, cooked and cooled

1 to 11/2 cups chopped ham (I use turkey ham)

1 (2-oz.) jar sliced pimento or peppadews (sweet, piquant peppers found in some olive bars)

¼ cup chopped red, green or yellow bell peppers

2 tbls. capers, drained or to taste

½ small red onion, chopped or more if desired

Dressing:

3 tbls. to ¼ cup Dijon mustard

¼ cup tarragon vinegar

2 tbls. chopped fresh parsley

2 tbls. chopped green onions

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

About 1 cup olive oil

1. Cook rice according to package directions and allow to cool. Place in medium bowl.

2. Add ham, pimento or peppadews, bell pepper, capers and red onions, to taste.

3. To make dressing: In small bowl, combine mustard, vinegar, parsley and green onions. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Whisk in olive oil until smooth.

4. Pour dressing over rice mixture. Stir gently and refrigerate, covered, 6 hours or overnight.