Broccoli and Chickpea Rice Salad

Broccoli and Chickpea Rice Salad

It's been a very hot summer thus far, so salads have been appearing more often than not on the table. This earthy summer salad has everything you need for a complete meal. Lightly sautéed robust green broccoli florets, plump buttery soft chickpeas for protein, and nutty brown rice and sliced almonds to fill it out. I dressed it up with zesty dressing of lemon juice, pineapple juice, Dijon mustard, olive oil, a bit of garlic and tamari.

It's a snap to make up and substantial while not too taxing on the digestive system or the cooks patience — it's pretty common for our appetites to melt away along with our desire to cook anything fancy in the heat and humidity. But easy never means bland — just try this salad and see what I mean.

Salad:
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 4 cups broccoli florets
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice (2/3 cup dried rice)
  • 1 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas (1/2 dried chickpeas)
  • 1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes, soaked in hot water for 40 minutes, drained and chopped (optional)
  • 2 to 3 green onions, trimmed and chopped, or 2 shallots finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds (lightly toasted if desired)
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro or parsley, trimmed and chopped
Dressing:
  • juice from 1/2 lemon (1 1/2 tablespoons)
  • 2 tablespoons pineapple juice (juice from canned pineapple)
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons tamari (soy) sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt, or to taste
  • fresh ground black pepper
Instructions:
  • In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the broccoli, stir well, and cover. Cook, stirring often, until the broccoli is tender. Add the broccoli to a large bowl, along with the remaining salad ingredients.
  • To make the dressing, whisk together all of the dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well to coat evenly. Taste for seasoning and serve.

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