It has been an incredibly busy few weeks for me. In between shooting recipes for my new eCookbook – coming out this November, I have also been busy mentoring a very special young chef for the Tastic Just Add Colour Campaign. You might have seen my updates on Social Media about the big event, it was an incredibly tense cook off indeed…
The whole campaign was to be inspired by the proud South African tradition of the sumptuous ‘Seven Colours’ Sunday lunch. They challenged 7 students from across South Africa to conceptualize seven dishes (one for each day of the week), using Tastic rice as a core ingredient.
My student (the very talented Tassy Khan from Capsicum Culinary Studio in Sunninghill) got Yellow, for Monday – and she designed a stunner of a dessert – Passion Fruit Ricotta Basmati Rice Cream with Mango swirls, a Jasmine Coconut Rice Biscuit finished off with fresh fruit, Rice Crumble and Popping Candy. Guys, it was crazy delicious.
They had to cook off in front of a live audience, celebrities and media – and present their dishes to the judges after only 80 minutes of sweat inducing cooking. The lovely Tendani Nethengwe from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology, reigned suprime on the night and won a whopping R100 000. It it such a great initiative for young students in this industry and I hope to be a part of it again next year.
Now, back to the recipe – which also kind of came out pretty colourful for this post – is a Roasted Butternut and Spinach Brown Rice Salad. Rice Salads seemed to be fading away and I don’t understand why it’s not presented more with braai or roasts. It is the perfect rice salad for any season, simply because it can be served cold with a braai or hot during cooler months to accompany your roasts.
I made it with Tastic Nature’s Brown Rice with Sun Dried Tomatoes – if you are using plain brown rice, simply add chopped sun dried tomatoes into the cooked rice.
I hope you guys are going to be hitting the grills this weekend. This is a perfect rice salad that it pretty easy to put together and tastes amazing. You can add your own twist to the original by adding raisins, nuts or even mushrooms to this very versatile salad. Just a quick shout out to the efficient team over at Tastic for an amazing campaign. Enjoy!
|Prep Time||10 min|
|Cook Time||40 min|
- 1 small butternut peeled and cubed
- 15 ml olive oil
- salt and black pepper
- 4 tablespoons butter or coconut oil for vegan version
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 2 stalks celery finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon crushed garlic
- 2 bird eye chili finely chopped
- 1 cup chopped spinach
- 2 cups cooked Tastic Natures Brown Rice with Sun dried Tomato
- handful chopped parsley
- Arrange the chopped butternut in an oven safe roasting dish and drizzle with olive oil.
- Season and roast in the oven for about 40 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius until soft.
- Heat the butter or coconut oil in a small saucepan and saute the onion, celery, garlic and chili for a few minutes until onion is translucent. Set aside.
- When the butternut is done, transfer it to a large mixing bowl together with the sautéed ingredients.
- Add the chopped spinach and mix through. Add the cooked rice and mix.
- Finish off with parsley and seasoning to taste. Serve hot or cold.