This weekend I was up in Napa Valley for business. It’s hard to even type that with a straight face, but I did work! For lunch the first day we went to the Rutherford Grill. It was clearly a local favorite. We sat at the bar and had a blast talking to the bartender, a Huntington Beach native and some of the locals on their lunch break. I don’t know how much work I’d get done if I had lunch at the bar often…
The food was delicious. Some of it seemed familiar to me though and when I came home I realized it is owned by the same group that runs to local restaurants Gulfstream and Bandera’s here in Newport Beach.
One of the standout dishes was the Wild Rice Salad. Yummy is not a strong enough word to describe it. One bite and we were addicted. The flavors are tangy and the texture crunchy and it explodes in your mouth at the first bite.
So, you know me. I came home and googled. Voila…up popped the recipe and tonight I came home and whipped it up. It is easy. A little toasting, a little chopping, some wild rice and you have a great salad to add to your favorites.
Rutherford Grill’s Wild Rice Salad
4 cups water
1 tsp salt
1 cup wild rice (about 6 oz)
½ cup finely chopped dried figs
1/3 cup chopped toasted pecans
1/3 cup chopped roasted cashews
¼ cup chopped green onions
2 Tbs finely chopped celery
2 Tbs finely chopped red onion
2 Tbs raspberry vinegar or red wine vinegar
1 Tbs fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp sugar
¼ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup olive oil
Transfer rice to large bowl. Add next 6 ingredients. Can be prepared one day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.
Mix next 5 ingredients in blender. With blender running gradually add oils. Pour dressing over rice and toss. Season with salt and pepper