Oof. One week in and classes are already in full swing (and with four grad level classes, full swing means homework due Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights). Nevertheless, I am back in the kitchen almost every night, even if it does mean that I don’t start cooking until 9:15 most nights of the week. Of course, those nights when I don’t quite make it into the kitchen are usually filled with pizza and beer, so I need to be especially careful to eat healthy the other six nights. And, as everyone knows, pizza always tastes better if you have been subsiding on soups and salads).
With that in mind, I made a delightfully light (and totally filling) arugula salad for dinner the other night. White beans and wild rice provide enough protein that it doesn’t feel like rabbit food, while a light Dijon vinaigrette gives it an elegant flavor.
Arugula Salad with White Beans and Wild Rice
- One box baby Arugula (5oz)
- ½ cup dried or one can Cannelloni Beans
- ½ cup Wild Rice
- 1 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. Olive Oil
- ¼ cup Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 Tbsp. Dijon Mustard
- ¼ tsp. each Dried Basil and Garlic Powder
- Salt and Pepper to taste
If using dried cannelloni beans, soak for 8-12 hours and then cook for ~45 minutes in simmering water (enough to cover the beans by one inch) or until a bean can be easily smooshed between your fingers without feeling grainy. Drain and allow to cool completely. Add salt about 40 minutes add a pinch of salt to the water. If using canned beans, they do not need to be cooked, just drained and rinsed.
Simmer the wild rice for 45 minutes in a tightly sealed pot or until rice is tender. Use a 2:1 water to rice ratio. Allow to cool completely before use.
In a cup, combine oil, vinegar, mustard, basil and garlic in a small bowl (I used a measuring cup, fill the balsamic to the ¼ cup mark, then use the oil to fill to the ⅓ cup mark) and whisk with a fork (or whisk if that floats your boat) until all ingredients are well combined. Taste and season with salt and pepper as desired.
Combine dressing, drained beans, rice and arugula in a large bowl and toss to combine. Serve chilled or at room temperature.