17 June 2014

Wild Rice, Mint and Chickpea Salad

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The not so puuurfect alarm clock


Nudge, nudge.

"What is going on..." I mutter with eyes only able to draw themselves halfway open.  My glasses are in the drawer of the nightstand and everything is hazy.

Nudge, nudge.

"Oxford, are you hungry bud?" 


Blindly grabbing for my alarm clock to bring it about an inch and half from my face.  I can see the time now.

"5:26am.  Yeah, not happening."

Nudge, nudge, NUDGE!

"Go back to sleep dude," I mutter, setting the clock down and rolling over into the warmth of my bed. 

Nudge, nudge...bite.

"AWE SH--NUBENEUBENUBE-DO!  You seriously just chomped on me!"

The cat quirks his head to the side.  He blinks and even with my blind-as-a-bat eyesight I know he is looking right at me non-pulsed by the fact he just drew blood from my flesh.


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The taste tester
My fork stands poised to dive into the wild rice.  Work was rough and I am exhausted from being on my feet for the better part of the day.


A mysterious paw comes from under the table and its little claws are extended toward the fruits of my culinary labor for the evening.

Swipe, ping!

The paw finds purchase in a chickpea and it disappears into the depths beneath the table.

"Oxford, buddy, I just put out your dinner.  Can you leave mine alone?"  For some reason I think I can rationalize with the cat.  After seven years together, I should know better.

Thump, swipe, "Meow!"

The cat launches a sneak attack from the other side of the table.  I am to weary from my day.  He senses my weakness.  Another "pawful" of rice flies into the air and lands on the floor. 

There is chewing and finally a familiar rub against my leg.  The cat looks at me, gives a dramatic "omph!" before flopping over to showcase his belly. 
I rub it in deference to his outwitting me once again.

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The older sister

She looks at me and I imagine, that if able, her brow would furrow at me. 

She would never let him get away with something like stealing her food. 

She is more apt to deal with his devious ways.

After all, she has claws too.  

I scratch between her ears and then pull out the laser pointer for her amusement.  

She has her human well-trained.

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Wild Rice, Mint and Chickpea Salad

The Shopping List:
  • 2 cups wild rice
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • sea salt
  • ground pepper
  • 1 can (14 oz) chickpeas
  • 1 handful mint leaves, roughly chopped
  • 1 handful parsley, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 4 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
The Method:

Pour the vegetable stock into a saucepan with a dash of sea salt and freshly ground pepper and bring it up to a boil before placing in the wild rice and reducing the heat to low.  Allow the wild rice to absorb all of the moisture from the stock while stirring occasionally so it does not stick to the bottom (approx. 40 minutes).

Once all of the stock is absorbed, remove the pan from heat and transfer into a serving bowl.  Add in the chickpeas, mint, parsley, nutmeg, and cinnamon.  Stir until mixed.

For the vinaigrette, put the apple cider vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, a dash of sea salt, a dash of ground pepper into a small jar.  Give it a good shake and pour over the salad before serving. 

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