This dish is a bit of an ugly duckling. Though it looks monochromatic and dull, the flavors and textures are anything but boring. The slight crunch of the brown rice works really well with the softness of the chickpeas and golden raisins. The turkey ham lends the perfect salty bite without overwhelming the sweetness of the raisins, tart of the lemon, and spiciness of the sriracha and curry powder. The intoxicating aroma of the cumin really took this dish over the top. If you don’t like the combination of savory, sweet, and tart, this is not the dish for you – Zak wanted nothing to do with it. I, however, found it addictive and interesting, and really can’t wait to have a second round for lunch tomorrow.
Brown Rice and Chickpea Salad with Ham
Adapted from Food & Wine
1 cup brown rice
1 tbs. fresh lemon juice
1 tbs. red wine vinegar
1 tbs. whole grain Dijon mustard
2 tsp. honey
3/4 tsp. curry powder
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
Pinch chili powder
2 tbs. olive oil
1/2 19 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 oz. turkey ham, diced
2 small scallions, white and light green parts, thinly sliced
2-3 tbs. golden raisins
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
1 tbs. sriracha
Cook rice according to package instructions. Drain and rinse under cold water.
Meanwhile, add lemon juice, vinegar, mustard, honey, curry powder, cumin, and chili powder to a food processor. With food processor running, slowly add the olive oil and process until emulsified.
In a small sauce pan, sauté ham until crisp on the edges. Set aside.
Toss the chickpeas, ham, scallions, raisins, and rice with the dressing and sriracha. Taste for seasonings and adjust as necessary.