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LET’S EAT

Rice and pea salad with basil vinaigrette

(Food Styling/Catherine Smart; Essdras M Suarez/Globe Staff)
By Catherine Smart
June 30, 2010

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Serves 4

A light herb dressing pairs nicely with spicy radishes and sweet peas — both in season right now — in this colorful, crunchy summer salad.

DRESSING

Juice of 1 orange
Juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 packed cup fresh basil leaves, stemmed
1 tablespoon honey
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/3 cup olive oil
1. In a food processor, combine the orange and lemon juice, vinegar, mustard, basil, honey, salt, and pepper. Work the mixture until the basil is coarsely chopped.

2. With the motor running, add the oil through the feed tube in a thin steady stream until it is blended.

SALAD

Salt and pepper, to taste
1 cup shelled fresh peas
1 cup long-grain white rice
3 scallions, chopped
1 bunch radishes, thinly sliced
2 carrots, grated
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1. Bring a saucepan of salted water to a boil. Drop in the peas and cook for 2 minutes or until they are just tender. Drain and rinse with very cold water until the peas are cold.

2. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the rice and cook, stirring, until the water returns to a boil. Simmer for 12 minutes exactly (the rice will not absorb all the water). Drain into a colander and poke a dozen holes into the rice; set it aside to cool.

3. In a large bowl combine the rice, peas, scallions, radishes, carrots, and parsley. Add enough of the dressing to moisten the rice and vegetables. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if you like. Cover and refrigerate for the flavors to mellow. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.