I’m going to go ahead and claim black rice as “the next quinoa.” With more protein than brown rice and more anthocyanins than blueberries, “black” or “forbidden” rice is the new nutrition darling and it looks great on your plate.
The black color actually comes from the same dark purple pigment that colors blueberries, acai berries, and eggplants. Dark red and purple colors signify a healthy antioxidant content and these beautiful foods are powerful free radical-fighters, lowering inflammation and disease risk.
Black rice can be used as a substitute for rice in most recipes as long as you don’t mind if it stains everything else purple (be careful with your clothes and rugs too). It’s cooked similarly to brown rice, following the general rule of 1 cup of rice to 2 cups of liquid. In this recipe I recommend using chicken broth not only for the added flavor, but also as an easy way to boost the nutritional value of your meal. If you’re feeling fancy, add a piece of kombu seaweed to the liquid as it cooks and remove it before serving to add an extra dose of minerals to your dish.
This simple pilaf recipe has a sweet, nutty flavor and is a great side dish for salmon, roasted chicken, or even tossed with greens and vegetables in a salad. Make a large batch and store it in your fridge for up to one week.
- 1 cup black rice
- 2 cups chicken broth, vegetable broth, or water
- ¼ cup coconut oil or ghee
- ½ yellow onion, diced
- ⅓ cup golden raisins
- zest of 1 orange
- ½ tsp. sea salt
- ⅓ cup toasted walnuts
- To prepare the rice, you can either soak it overnight in water and drain for optimal digestion, or you can simply rinse it 2-3 times and drain.
- In a medium saucepan, heat coconut oil or ghee over medium heat. Add onions and saute until translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Add the orange zest and rice and stir to mix well.
- Once the rice has been coated in oil, add the broth and salt and bring to a boil. Cover, lower the heat and simmer on low for 30-40 minutes or until the rice is tender and the liquid is evaporated. If you soaked your rice ahead of time, the cooking time will likely be reduced to 20-30 minutes.
- Toss in the raisins and walnuts and fluff with a fork before serving.