A hearty and delicious salad that will transport your tastebuds to the streets of France.
Meal prepping just got easier thanks to our French rice salad with chicken apple sausage. Medium grain brown rice joins Brie cheese, chicken apple sausage, avocado, cornichons, and a skinny red vinaigrette to create a rich, filling, and wholesome cold dish. Many traditional cold pasta and potato salads rely on mayonnaise to bind ingredients together. However, this meal in one combines whole grains with a much lighter dressing.
Rice Salad Is Distinctly French
If you’ve ever had the good fortune to attend a pot-luck thrown by anyone French, you’ve probably tried rice salad. Instead of pasta or potatoes, French home cooking features a lot of rice based salads made with chilled rice combined with proteins and tangy vinaigrette. You’ll probably never see this item on a French menu, which is a travesty for people who adore French cuisine. Luckily, now there are loads of new travel shows featuring foods locals make at home. Heritage recipes are appearing everywhere, which is another good thing for foodies.
Fat + Protein + Carbs + Vinegar
It’s well known that a lot of French food is high in fat, and this recipe is no exception. However, there’s some science involved with this kind of recipe that’s worthy of breaking down into mathematical components.
For starters, rice is mostly full of carbs, and it may not be best to base a meal upon carbohydrates if weight is a struggle. However, this French rice salad is light and full of vinegar and cornichons. Consequently, what you get is a brighter entree enriching the dish with acidity. A vinegar-based dressing with added pickles helps with digestion.
When it comes to nutrition, vinegar contains trace minerals, amino acids, mineral salts, and polyphenolic compounds, and polyphenols reduce inflammation. By that token, when combined with inflammation-causing foods, vinegar contributes to minimizing the effects. Consider, if you will, the same dish coated in mayonnaise, which is extremely high in saturated fat. Digestion will work in an altogether oppositional manner.
Another Secret Is To Prepare Ahead
This cold dish calls for cooled rice, hard-boiled eggs, and a homemade salad dressing. Luckily, it’s super easy to prepare these components ahead of schedule. A great trick for making medium grain rice is to measure more water than a typical recipe calls for. Strain the water out at the 45 minute mark. Then, cover the rice for another ten minutes off the burner, and it will have that undeniable perfect texture of soft chewiness.
This dish tastes best when the sausage gets a light saute. Leave the Brie out to room temperature, too, but don’t cut the avocado in advance. It really tastes best when cut at the time of consumption. Refrigerate the side with the pit for the next time you serve the cold dish.
Overall, this salad makes for an amazing lunch or dinner. Or you can equally pair as a small side with a bowl of soup or greens.
French Rice Salad
- 2 cups brown rice
- 6 hard-boiled eggs sliced
- 8 ounces Brie cheese sliced in small pieces
- .75 pounds chicken apple sausage diced
- 1 cup Cornichon pickles diced
- 2 avocadoes diced
- 4 ounces red wine vinegar
- 6 ounces water
- 2 ounces olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard brown mustard is fine
- 4 garlic cloves mashed
- 2 pinches of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- Prepare rice, eggs, brie cheese, and dressing in advance. Cool rice for at least two hours.
- Saute chicken sausage until warm (5-10 minutes)
- Lightly mix rice with eggs, cheese, sausage, and pickles. Dress the salad until well mixed with vinaigrette. You probably don’t need to use all of it. Add avocado to bowl once it’s ready to serve.
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