Deepa and Ashish Mehrotra entertain regularly and their home is often packed with relatives.
The couple loves planning a variety of meals, spanning various types of cuisine. And it is always beautifully turned out because they are sticklers for presentation.
The Mehrotras are from Uttar Pradesh -- she from Sitapur; he from Bareilly -- and cooking became a shared passion after they set up home first in Jaipur and later in New Delhi and Mumbai.
They both love to roll up their sleeves and don aprons to experiment with all types of cuisine, innovate in the kitchen with food presentation, come up with startlingly good fusion dishes and, of course, feed people.
Ashish once cooked up a giant pot of an elegant pasta dish for the office -- he is the senior VP at Rediff.com -- using the basic facilities of the office canteen. And Deepa is known in the family for being a gracious host and for her wonderful meals.
Their Brown Rice Salad With Honey Mustard Dressing is a healthy, filling meal in a bowl with something from all the food groups, explains Ashish. It can be paired with grilled chicken or grilled salmon.
Brown Rice Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing
For the salad
- 100 gm boiled corn kernels
- 100 gm edamame, frozen or fresh, blanched
- 50 gm French beans, cut into 1-inch pieces, blanched
- 50 gm carrot, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces, blanched
- 50 gm salted peanuts
- 3 cups boiled brown rice
- Cajun seasoning to taste, available online
- No additional salt required as both seasoning and dressing have salt
- Pinch black pepper powder
- Handful fresh mint leaves, chopped
- 1-2 tbsp honey mustard dressing or to taste (please see recipe below)
Honey mustard dressing
- 4 tbsp honey
- 4 tbsp sharp mustard
- 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- ½ tbsp coarsely ground black pepper
- On a large salad plate spread the brown rice to form a bed.
Arrange the vegetables and peanuts on top of the rice.
Top with chopped mint leaves.
Serve the the honey mustard dressing in a separate bowl or container on the side to be drizzled individually on each portion served.
Editor's Note: For a still healthier salad, opt to substitute the brown rice with quinoa.
There will be honey mustard dressing left over. Store in the fridge for up to two weeks.
Pair this salad with mashed potatoes, a cheesy bake or a quiche and garlic bread for the vegetarians and either grilled chicken or grilled rawas or salmon.
For a Jain version, swap carrots for ½ cup chopped blanched broccoli.
Cajun seasoning is a chatpata spice, but for still a little extra kick some might like to add a dash of Tabasco or green Tabasco.