little girl peeling banana

Brown Rice and Banana Salad with Bacon and Black Olives

Talk about alliteration! I can’t help it; I like coming up with titles that roll off the tongue. And I desperately hoped this would stay on my tongue, as I went into this experiment completely blind, excitedly wondering, “How on earth am I going to pull off
Rice
+
banana
+
bacon
+
Olive?”

What brought on this crazy combo?

Yup . . . basically the only ingredients in the fridge. Evening had rolled around, dinner was calling, and I needed to come up with something to eat fast.

Less than 10 minutes later—the porky, olive-flecked, banana-flavored rice swirling around in my mouth—I wished I could start all over again.

Just so I could double the serving.

Brown Rice and Banana Salad with Bacon and Black Olives

Recipe by C. Marie

What I gathered together:
The salad:
½ cup brown rice, cooked and cooled (white will obviously do, but I’m stuck on the nutty taste and nutritional heft of the wholegrain version)
½ banana, ripe but firm (very important, as all I had were frozen bananas, and once thawed, the texture was too mushy), cut into slices
1 tablespoon pitted, black olives, halved and quartered
1-2 tablespoons onion, chopped
The dressing:
½-1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon juice
½ teaspoon honey
½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar (probably would have used red wine vinegar for a sharper contrast—but, alas, I was out)
1-2 squirts of spicy brown mustard, or any type of mustard with a kick (a touch delivered at the end brought just the right bite to offset the sweetness of the bananas and the mellowness of the olive oil)
½ teaspoon cinnamon
dash of paprika
dinkier dash of cayenne, or to taste
Several dashes of red pepper flakes (optional, but a great addition if you’re a spice fanatic like me and cayenne doesn’t cut it)
Pepper, to taste (can probably skip salt—the olives, mustard, and bacon get the job done)
½-1 slice of cooked bacon, crumbled (mmmmm . . . the crunchiness blended beautifully with the soft bananas, and the salty “porky-ness” melded perfectly with the briny olives)

Items
How I threw it together:

Grab a bowl. Dump in the salad ingredients: brown rice, banana, olives, and onion.

Whisk together in another bowl (a jar works, too, if you feel like shaking it up) the dressing ingredients: olive oil, lemon juice, cider vinegar, honey, mustard, cinnamon, paprika, cayenne, red pepper flakes (if using), and pepper. Pour over the rice mixture and give it a toss. Taste, and adjust seasonings, if necessary.

Scatter with crumbles of luscious Bacon.

On the chance you’re saving it for later and leave it in the fridge for a few hours or overnight, please, tell me how it held up.

Of course, you know what I did:

DevourDevoured immediately!

 

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