Warm Summer Salad with Black Beans, Sweet Corn & Brown Rice


by Chef Chuck Wiley, Café ZuZu at the Hotel Valley Ho


Posted on July 17, 2013 at 6:00 AM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 17 at 11:59 AM

Yield:     4 Servings as a lunch or dinner entree

1 Tbsp            Olive oil
1 small           Red onion, cut in half and sliced
1 clove            Garlic, chopped
¼ lb                 Shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, sliced
2 ears             Corn, kernels removed from the husk
To taste           Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (15 oz) can  Black beans, drained (or 10 oz. cooked dried beans)
1 each            Red bell pepper, roasted, peeled, seeded and cut into strips
¼ cup, packed    Cilantro leaves
1 recipe         Tomato Cumin Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
1 recipe          Brown rice (recipe follows)
3 oz                 Baby spinach
¼ cup             Pumpkinseeds, toasted

1.    Heat a large sauté pan over medium high heat. Add the olive oil, onion and garlic. Sauté a few minutes until onions begin to caramelize. Add the mushrooms and corn, season with salt and pepper and cook until mushrooms are done; about 5 minutes. Add black beans and red pepper and heat through. Remove from the heat, toss in the cilantro and 4-5 Tbsp of the Tomato Cumin Vinaigrette (you can drizzle the remaining 3 Tbsp over the salad). Check seasoning and set aside.

2.    Spoon the rice into a bowl and top with the spinach. Pour the warm vegetables over the spinach (this will wilt the spinach slightly) and sprinkle with the pumpkinseeds.  

Tomato Cumin Vinaigrette     makes ½ cup

1 each            Tomato, cut in chunks (1/4 lb)
1 clove            Garlic, chopped
1 Tbsp            Red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp            Olive oil
1 each            Green onion, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp        Cumin, freshly toasted & ground
1/2 tsp         Fresh thyme, coarsely chopped
To taste        Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1.    Combine the tomato, garlic, vinegar and oil in the bowl of a food processor; puree and transfer to a mixing bowl. Whisk in the green onion, cumin and thyme. Season with salt and pepper.

Brown Rice

1 cup            Brown Rice
2-1/2 cup         Water
Pinch            Kosher salt

1.    Combine the rice and water in a 2 qt. saucepan, season with a little salt and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over low heat until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender, about 45-50 minutes. Transfer to a mixing bowl and cool to room temperature, fluffing with a fork a few times.


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