Sweet Potato and Black Rice Salad – A colorful side dish that is as delicious and good for you as it looks! The sweetness of the potatoes are balanced with the savory nutty flavor of the rice and the tartness from the pomegranate seeds and all work together for an incredible mouth experience.
Often when I cook I take on different personalities. For this Black Rice Salad w/ Sweet Potatoes recipe I was in Malcolm Wang mode aka the Afro-Asian. Listening to Japanese techno and watching a lot of Korean revenge flicks can put you in a different mindset.
I was up in the wee hours cooking recently. It was about 2:00 in the morning when I decided to take a break from cooking. I sat down to catch-up on one of my favorite Korean dramas, “Rooftop Prince” and it occurred to me that I had big ole bag of Black Rice on hand.
What is black rice?
During my years in Chicago living so close to an Asian Grocery Store Jung Boo Market and developed a habit of eating black “forbidden” rice quite often. Black rice in my opinion is superior to brown and white rice in taste and texture. Also, its color lends itself to visually appealing dishes. It has a slight sweetness to it that makes it a nice contrast with savory ingredients or a good combo with other sweet ingredients.
What Makes this Sweet Potato and Black Rice Salad so healthy?
Needless to say I had the makings of a simple dish with so many great qualities – color, taste, health, and texture. Black rice has all the same benefits of brown rice, but is also superior with respect to antioxidants. It’s actually on the same level of blueberries when it comes to antioxidants. Add some pomegranates and sweet potatoes and you get a cholesterol, blood pressure lowering, and heart blockage melting yet still tasty combo. In addition to the health benefits, its just a cool feeling to bite down into the earthy, nutty rice and get that cool tangy burst of pomegranate juice in your mouth after biting into a seed.
This is a simple recipe featuring just a few ingredients (black rice, lime juice, green onions, sweet potatoes, pomegrante seeds, and smoked paprika). The paprika is what gives it that soul food essence. You go into any Big Mama’s or Ma Dear’s cabinet and you will find multiple bottles of this spice.
Black Rice Salad Tips
- Black rice would actually make an amazing natural purple dye for foods. However, because of this, it’s a bit like working with turmeric – be careful when handling it because it will stain all of your equipment. Avoid storing it in plastic containers, wash your kitchen tools shortly after using them to cook black rice, and don’t wear your fanciest attire when cooking.
- Black rice can be used in a rice cooker. You’ll just need to rinse fully to remove any excess starch before cooking otherwise the rice will be gummy. Remember, black rice stains everything so use a metal or glass bowl to rinse.
- Black rice requires a longer cooking time than white rice. Soaking reduces the cook time, but changes the texture some. Soaking has other benefits as well including helping remove some of the naturally occurring phytic acid, which inhibits mineral absorption and helping to break down some of the hard-to-digest proteins.
Sweet Potato and Black Rice Salad With Pomegranates
If you make this delicious and healthy sweet potato and black rice salad please come back and leave me a comment below with your feedback. Definitely take a photo of the dish and be sure to tag #foodfidelity so that I can see them. You can also keep up with my food exploits as well as original recipes! You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. If you like any of the music you find on the site, visit me at Spotify to find curated monthly playlists.
For another tasty perfect rice based dish try this Brisket Fried Rice.
Black Rice Salad with Sweet Potatoes and Pomegranate Seeds
Delicious, hearty and healthy sweet potatoes and black rice salad topped with fresh green onions and tart pomegranate seeds.
- 1 cup Black Rice
- 1 medium Sweet Potato (peeled and cut into small cubes)
- 1/4 cup Fresh Pomegranate Seeds
- 1 Bunch Green Onions (chopped)
- 1 whole Lime Juiced
- 2 tsp smoked sweet Paprika
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tbsp olive oil
Cook rice according to package directions. Rinse well with cold water.
Put sweet potatoes in a mixing bowl and add olive oil to coat completely. Season sweet potatoes with kosher salt and black pepper. Roast in oven at 375 for 20-30 minutes until sweet potatoes are fork tender. Set aside and let cool.
Toss rice with remaining ingredients. Add salt and pepper to taste. Feel free to serve immediately, but I actually like to refrigerate and serve cold. This also allows the flavors to come together and balance each out.