It has been crazy hot for the last several days. If I could get away with ice cream for every meal I would. So as an alternative, there is this Olive Bar Salad. It has only one cooked ingredient. That would be the brown rice. I made a double batch the other night for dinner. So today when I put this salad together, I just took everything out of the fridge.
Once this salad is made it stays good in the fridge for several days. It is good cold or at room temperature. You can eat it just as I made it, or add it to lettuce greens of your choice. The key here is, pick up your favorite things from the grocery store olive bar and then add a few fresh salad veggies and a starch of your choice. I like quinoa, barley, farrow, wild rice blend, or in my case today, brown rice. The starch is important because it soaks up and distributes the dressing. And, let’s be honest, it’s all about the dressing. Plus the starch is what makes the salad a filling main dish. It’s all I need for lunch.
My must haves are marinated artichoke hearts, a few roasted garlic cloves and some sort of olives. I really like the tapenade, which is a mix of different types of chopped olives (first because they are already chopped), capers, spices and an acid like vinegar or lemon juice. It makes for an even better dressing. Just add a few fresh ingredients like green onion, celery and sun dried or slow roasted tomatoes and you’re done.
Thank you to my sister for showing me the light regarding the “salad bar cheat” many years ago. You rock Sis.
Olive Bar Salad
Your favorite ingredients from the grocery store olive bar plus a few fresh veggies and a starch. You have a light meal in a flash.
- 2 cups brown rice cooked
- 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes
- 1/2 cup celery thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup green onion thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup marinated artichoke hearts sliced
- 1 tbsp roasted garlic cloves diced
- 1/4 cup olive tapenade plus a bit of their liquid or mixed diced olives
For the dressing
- 1/4 cup good extra virgin olive oil
- 1/8 cup white wine vinegar
- 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
- dash honey optional
- salt and pepper to taste
Combine rice and vegetables together in bowl.
In a separate bowl or jar, combine dressing ingredients. I like to put them in a small jar with a lid. Add dressing to rice and veggies. I recommend using about 3/4 of the dressing to start. Combine and taste if needed add more of the dressing.
Serve cold or at room temperature. Add salad greens, crumbled goat or feta cheese and pumpkin seeds if you like.
For the starch, use brown rice, wild rice blend, quinoa, barley or farrow.