Once a week, I plan our meals.
This usually looks something like this: I sit down on the couch with the computer on my lap, a sprawl of ripped magazine pages beside me and a short stack of cookbooks that seem particularly appealing that week.
Once I’m situated, I typically start by glancing through recipes I’ve pinned to try. Then, if I’m feeling neglectful of a particular cookbook, I’ll glance through its pages for additional inspiration.
Finally comes the magazines. For the past couple years, I’ve been receiving Real Simple and Food Network subscriptions as gifts. Every month when they arrive, I go through the various recipes with my husband and rip out any pages containing a dish we’d like to try (I used to fold over the pages, but would often go months – years! – without going through them again). These pages are placed in a pile.
Every week I go through the pages and pull out any recipes that are calling my attention. Once that recipe is made (thanks to having a blog!), the page goes in the recycling bin. This keeps that pile from getting too out of control.
There are, however, some recipes that get used almost immediately upon arriving at our doorstep and don’t even make it to “the pile.” Like this Lemon-Herb Rice Salad I saw in the May edition of Food Network Magazine. While the ingredients are incredibly simple (think: rice, lemon, carrots), combining them with roasted peanuts and a touch of cilantro adds a whole new dimension to any rice dish I’ve had before.
With a few slight changes, I was able to easily adjust this to fresh ingredients we already had a home. You can serve this with warm or cool rice, and it makes the perfect lunch leftovers.
Vegan Peanut Rice Salad
Adapted from Food Network
Keywords: entree salad side vegetarian vegan rice nuts
- 1 lemon, halved
- 1/2 lime
- 2 tbs. olive oil
- 1 cup brown rice
- 1 tbs. rice wine vinegar
- 2 tsp. light brown sugar
- Salt and pepper
- 1 cup julienned carrot
- 1 cucumber, diced
- 1/2 cup chopped salted roasted peanuts
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
1. Cook rice according to packaged directions, with juice for 1/2 lemon mixed into rice/water mixture.
2. Meanwhile, make the dressing: in small bowl, combine juice from other 1/2 lemon, lime juice, vinegar, brown sugar and pinch of salt and pepper. Whisk together until sugar dissolves. Slowly whisk in olive oil. Set aside.
3. Combine rice with carrot, cucumber, peanuts and cilantro. Toss gently with dressing. Serve and enjoy!
~Do you have a meal planning routine?