I stumbled across this recipe on Leite’s Culinaria and since that day it has become a permanent fixture on our holiday table. Amazingly fresh, flavorful, and healthy; the nutty flavors of the wild rice, earthiness of mushrooms, and sweet cranberries is a match made in culinary heaven. Another major advantage is that it is vegetarian and gluten-free. Of course, I have known to throw in some sauteed chorizo to the mix once in a while too.
You can serve it as a salad or a side dish. Feel free to play around with the ingredients too: pistachios or cashew-nuts would taste wonderful and add richness to the dish too. And you certainly don’t need to stop at baby bellas or portebellos, add your favorite mushrooms as well. The recipe listed below is my version of this delightful dish.
Wild Rice with Cranberries, Mushrooms, & Walnuts
This dish is incontestably a winner with all. Even people who shy away from wild rice will fall in love with this dish with just one bite. If you are in a hurry, feel free to substitute wild rice with Uncle Ben’s original wild rice box. This recipe would call for 2 boxes. (Yes, I occasionally have known to cheat). And for the meat lovers, add sautéed diced chorizo. Though this dish is so flavorful, I doubt you will need anything else.
- 1.5 cups organic wild rice
- 1 cup walnuts, diced
- 3 cups baby bella mushrooms, sliced
- 3/4 dried cranberries, chopped
- 1 big onion, diced or 4 shallots
- kosher salt and black pepper to taste
- 3 tbs minced parsley
- good quality EVOO
- Make the wild rice, following the package directions.
- In a heavy-set pan lightly brown the chopped walnuts. Keep aside.
- In the same pan, sauté the onions till lightly brown. Set aside or add to the walnuts.
- Saute mushrooms till caramelized with kosher salt and 1 tsp of freshly ground pepper.
- Once the mushrooms are caramelized, add the wild rice, cranberries, walnuts, and onions. Toss gently to combine.
- Garnish with good quality EVOO and parsley. Serve warm or at room temperature.
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Do you have a favorite dish that your family simply must have at your holiday table? I would love to hear from you! Until next time, don’t forget to express your love for your friends and family. Remember, a hug doesn’t cost anything yet it means so much.