By Shel Zolkewich (@shelzolkewich)
WINNIPEG — Wild rice isn’t rice at all. It’s a grass. And here in Manitoba, we’re lucky to have a completely wild and organic version thanks to Naosap Harvest.
Throughout Canada and the United States, wild rice has been cultivated to meet the demand for this traditional food. But up at Cranberry Portage in northern Manitoba, the rice grows naturally in small lakes and is harvested by Tracy Wheeler-Anderson and her family. Their product is certified organic through OPAM (Organic Producers Association of Manitoba) and Non-GMO verified through the Non-GMO project. Aside from that, it’s delicious!
It takes about an hour to cook wild rice. Rinse the grains twice, then add three to four cups of water to one cup of rice. Keep an eye on it. The kernels will puff open. If you overcook the pot, you’ll end up with a mushy product.
I like to cook about two cups at a time, ending up with six to eight cups of cooked rice. I freeze it in one-cup plastic bags. It’s a quick and easy addition to soups and stews. The great thing about wild rice is that it’s packed with nutrition. It’s full of fibre, iron and especially protein (15 grams in half a cooked cup).
Wild Rice Salad
- 2 cups cooked Naosap Harvest Wild Rice
- ½ cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- ½ cup slivered almonds
- ½ cup chopped parsley
- ½ cup crumbled feta
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup canola oil
- 2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- salt and pepper to taste
Combine first six ingredients in a large bowl. In a small bowl, combine canola oil, balsamic vinegar, honey and salt and pepper. Mix well. Pour over salad and toss to combine. Let stand for at least one hour. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
Naosap Wild Rice