Sunday 3 May 2009

GYO Bill’s Broccoli Salad

About a month ago we had wild thunderstorms in Melbourne. The sort of day in which E took 2 hours getting home from work rather than the usual 45 minutes. The drought makes it hard to complain about rain (Melbourne’s water storages are only 27% full at the moment so rain is desperately needed for dams, farmers and gardens), although I am not sure why it falls in the wrong places. In February, when we had the terrible bushfires of what is now known as Black Saturday, up in Queensland they had widespread flooding.

In a similar way, it seems as soon as we get rain, the plants in the backyard do ok but the weeds absolutely thrive. The one pot plant I have which really laps up the rain and spreads like a weed is mint. In fact it has jumped into the parsley pot and completely taken over.

I found a Bill Granger recipe which I think I found in Delicious Magazine some years ago. It had barley, broccoli, Asian seasonings and mint. I was intrigued. A new way to use mint. I made a few small adjustments to the recipe. I didn’t have barley so I used brown rice instead. I changed the vegetables slightly, including some leftover leeks from the previous night's Mushroom and Lentil Ragout instead of spring onion.

The seasonings were very subtle but gave the rice a lift. The first night we had it warm with polenta chips and ragout. The second night I added some spinach and served it with vegetarian sausages. I even had some cold for lunch. Delicious! Not E’s favourite but I loved the interesting flavours in the combination of an Asian dressing and mint. It is hard to resist a salad with lots of substance, protein and green vegetables.

I am sending this to The Daily Tiffin who are hosting the Grow Your Own Event, which was created by Andrea’s Recipes. This event encourages bloggers to share recipes using produce from their garden or from gardens of friends and family.

Bill’s Broccoli Rice Salad
(adapted from Delicious Magazine?)
serves 4

1 cup brown rice, uncooked
1 large head of broccoli, chopped
½ cup cooked sliced leeks
1 corn cob
couple of handfuls of spinach, shredded
½ cup mint leaves, torn
⅓ cup cashews, roughly chopped

1 tsp sesame oil
1½ tbsp tamari
1½ tbsp mirin
1 tsp ginger, finely grated

Cook the brown rice in boiling water for 30 minutes (or using your own method). Meanwhile steam broccoli florets and corn. Cut the kernels off the corn cob. Make dressing by whisking (or shaking in a jar) all the ingredients. Place broccoli, leeks, corn and mint in a salad bowl. When rice is cooked and drained add to bowl. Toss through with dressing and sprinkle with cashew nuts. Serve warm or at room temperature.

On the stereo:
Island: Current 93


  1. This sounds lovely. Very fresh.

    Know what you mean about mint. I forgot about a pot of it and left it behind the shed. Any other herb would have died. The mint not only survived, it took over the area!

  2. Thanks Wendy - I was surprised at the mint jumping pots - no wonder we always had mint sauce when I was little

  3. This makes me want to grow my own herbs! This salad looks like it makes an awesome side dish.

  4. I am crazy for broccoli so thanks for this recipe Johanna! Good to know that it tastes great even if you switch round the vegetables too :)

  5. Thanks Ashley - I just grow herbs in pots - and mint is a good one to start with - this salad makes a good lunch as well as a side dish

    thanks Lorraine - it is the flavourings that impress - I am sure many vegetables could be used here

  6. Yippee--another way to use mint!! I am already wondering what I'll do with it all when it arrives in a month or so. I am bookmarking this recipes just for that purpose. Looks delicious!

  7. Thanks Ricki - nice to to know that the mint survives anything - am feeling a bit less anxious about it not doing so well right now


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