Add a sprinkle of toasted almonds and the goodness of brown rice and you have the perfect lunch. Barbecue the chicken and asparagus for a rustic summer salad.
- 1 cup brown rice
- 2 bunches asparagus, trimmed
- 500g chicken breast or fillets, sliced
- Fresh thyme and parsley, chopped
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
- 1 tbsp liquid honey
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- ½ cup dried apricots, sliced
- ¼ cup toasted almonds, sliced
- 2 handfuls baby spinach, mesclun or rocket
1 Cook the rice according to packet directions, drain and allow to cool. Blanch the asparagus in boiling water for a few minutes then drain, toss with a tbsp of oil and sear in a heated pan until tender.
2 Combine the chicken strips with 2 tbsp of the oil, a sprinkle of the herbs and season well.
3 Reheat the grill pan and sear the chicken strips for about 4-5 minutes each side until golden and cooked through, then set aside.
4 Combine remaining oil, mustard, honey and lemon juice in a jar and shake well. In a large bowl, combine brown rice, green leaves, apricots and almonds, with the remaining herbs, asparagus and chicken and toss with dressing.
About Jo Wilcox
"I have had a love of food my whole life. Lucky for me my mum allowed me to play in the kitchen from the very beginning – from sitting up on the bench watch her peeling peaches for preserving or planning dinner parties from her many Womans Weekly Cookbooks. Starting in my local beach café, I went onto professional cookery training and my big foodie OE working as a professional chef and nanny. At 21 I launched my first restaurant. The following years saw me owning a gourmet cake and dessert shop and then a pasta deli before I discovered the world of food styling. Today I work in food styling making food look beautiful and tasty in packaging and advertising shoots, as well as my most important role yet – Food Editor of New Zealand Woman’s Weekly. I aim to provide great meal solutions that are interesting and approachable, and of course gorgeous foodie photos that make you want to cook them! I love the feedback and the knowledge that people actually cook them and have great results. If I can give someone a love of cooking and enjoying family meal times and gatherings then my job is done!" See www.jowilcox.co.nzmore of this author