Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Greek-Style Picnic Salad

I think it is apparent that I like Greek food, because it's very vegetarian-friendly. I make a lot of things that involve spinach, feta, roasted red peppers, and kalamata olives. Tonight's dinner was no exception: all the typical Greek ingredients, combined with rice. I followed the recipe exactly except that I substituted roasted red peppers for the sun-dried tomatoes (not a fan of those).

I liked it, but I am not sure if I will make it again. That will depend on how tasty the leftovers are tomorrow for lunch at work. I think I will call this the Lunchbox Test, because sometimes things are awesome for lunch the next day and that makes the recipe like 10000 times better. Anyway, this was good. I especially liked how quick it was- from start to finish it only took 20 minutes. Nice.

Greek-Style Picnic Salad
Cooking Light, June 2005

2 cups uncooked white rice
1 cup boiling water
3/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, packed without oil
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
8 cups bagged prewashed spinach (about 8 ounces)
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups (8 ounces) reduced-fat feta cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup chopped pitted kalamata olives
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 (15 1/2-ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
3 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
10 lemon wedges (optional)

Cook rice according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Cool to room temperature; set aside.

Combine boiling water and sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl; let stand 30 minutes or until soft. Drain and cut into 1-inch pieces.

Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add spinach and garlic; sauté 3 minutes or until spinach wilts. Combine rice, tomatoes, spinach mixture, cheese, and next 5 ingredients (through chickpeas). Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon oil; toss gently to coat. Sprinkle with nuts; serve with lemon wedges, if desired.

Yield: 10 servings

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