This zesty salad has big, bold flavors and inflammation-fighting nutrition, as well as satisfying flavor from exotic spices, lemon juice and fragrant sesame oil. Chickpeas, a great vegetarian source of protein, make this rice salad a complete meal, and spring vegetables add wonderfully energizing flavors, textures, and colors.
2 cups cooked basmati rice
2 cups cooked or canned garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained and rinsed
2 red, yellow, or green bell peppers, diced
2 cups 1-inch asparagus pieces, blanched
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup thinly-sliced radish
4 tablespoons freshly ground flaxseeds
1/2 cup green onions, white and green parts, chopped
4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
4 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
Juice of 2 lemons
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 cups chopped fresh spinach
2 teaspoons sesame seeds, for garnish
1. In a large bowl, combine the rice, garbanzos, pepper, asparagus, celery, radish, flaxseeds, green onions, and parsley.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the sesame oil and lemon juice, then add the cumin, turmeric, and salt. Pour the dressing over the salad and mix well. Serve over a bed of spinach and sprinkle with sesame seeds.