Friday, April 8, 2011

Creamy Kale Walnut Rice (vegan)

This recipe could be called 'green rice' because it is so green! But I thought I would title it with some of it's ingredients so that truth be told where it's color comes from. It is a simple, yet complex combo of flavors that is also a colorful green in celebration of spring. I have been keeping busy with getting ready for our garden, yet, with all this rain and colder temps this week it's been better to stay mostly inside and daydream from the window with my baby. I am not complaining about the rain though, we need it here. If we want moist and ready-to-dig soil, then we gotta enjoy this rain first. Although...I do think I need to get myself a snazzy-cute pair of rain boots when it is time to actually get out there..... Hmmm, this is a hint for my husband since my birthday is a few weeks away.....;)
But, in the meantime I am using some great green ingredients to make a creamy side or even a meal if you so desire... This recipe was inspired by some of my most favorite foods, along with what is laying around in my fridge and needs to get used. So, friends, here we go...

Creamy Kale Walnut Rice Recipe (vegan)

First, if you do not have 3-4 cups of leftover brown rice in your fridge like me, you will have to make some fresh on the stove. I always soak rice for 4-8 hours before cooking, (just cover rice in a bowl with pure water, rinse and then cook like usual). I usually cook a batch every/other week or so and have some ready in the fridge to use with soups, salads and ect. So, I make 2 cups dry at a time, but this recipe will use about 3-4 cups of cooked brown rice, so if you are just making rice for this recipe, then make 1 1/2 cup of dry rice with 3 cups of water.

Second, You want to assemble the ingredients for the creamy sauce, so this is what you need:

1 1/2 cup of chopped lactino kale leaves
1 cup of chopped raw walnuts
1/4-1/2 cup of fresh chopped basil, or 1 TB or so of dried basil
1-2 cloves of minced garlic, or more if you love garlic. You can use dried garlic as well, about 2 ts. of dried garlic powder
1 ts. of dried oregano
1 ts. of dried marjoram
1/2 cup of water
1/4 cup of olive oil
1 TB of fresh lemon juice
1 ts. of sea salt or to your taste
1 ts. of cracked black pepper or to your taste

Put all of the above ingredients in a food processor, blender or magic bullet and blend on high to whip up a creamy green sauce. It should be a thick creamy substance when done, and if you need to add a touch more water or oil to get it moving in the blender, then do a spoonful at a time to get it moving to blend better. Then you have your sauce made and ready for mixing.

Lastly, steam/cook 1-2 cups of green beans, or sweet peas.

Put it all together: Combine in a large bowl the 3-4 cups of warm cooked rice, the sauce you blended and the steamed beans or peas. If you are stirring together cold rice and veggies, then I suggest you stir the rice, sauce and steamed veggie together on the stove to get warm together. The dish is done when it is all stirred and warmed together. Serve warm, not super hot... so that you can enjoy the flavors together. This is a great side, but if you want to add a protein to it or with it, then you have a whole dish as well.

Some toppings for this dish:
fresh basil
squeeze of lemon
pine nuts
chopped raw walnuts
favorite Italian cheese or vegan cheese
There you have it. I hope I didn't miss anything. It is really not that hard to make, just a few steps and mix it all together for the dish. Have rice, blend sauce and add veggie. Viola you are done! So, friends, I hope you enjoy this super green recipe. Hopefully this green dish will continue to encourage us as out grass starts to turn green again and the plants are ready for planting. I love this time of year....

Much love to you today!



  1. this looks great. I don't get kale where I live, so I am going to use rocket leaves or spinach whichever is available easily mostly spinach and prob. use cashew instead of walnuts?
    Looks yum and satisfying, I could eat it right now!
    bunnys mum

  2. Bunny's mum- I bet spinach and cashew would turn out wonderfully. Hope you enjoy!!!

  3. Thanks for the inspiration - I made this last night for a dinner party and it was a huge hit. I served it alongside some thyme & garlic roasted mushrooms and shallots and crispy roasted chickpeas.

    My few adjustments: I used quinoa, since that's what I had on hand, as well as curly instead of dino kale. I also upped the garlic and kale amounts, because we love the taste of both. :-)

    I will most certainly be making it again!

  4. it was delish, mom, dad, 2 year old daughter and 31/2 year old son ALL have clean plates! Thank you!