Spring Black Rice Salad

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Black rice is rich in anthocyanin, a powerful antioxidant (the same one responsible for the purple colour of blueberries and aubergines) which has been linked to improved cardiovascular health and reduced risk of cancer and dementia. It has a wonderful earthy, nutty flavour. Substitute brown basmati rice if you prefer.

  • SERVES: 4


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C, gas mark 6.
  2. Drizzle the butternut squash with olive oil, toss and roast in a baking tray for 30 minutes, until tender.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the rice in a large pan of water until it is soft, but not mushy – it should take about 35 minutes. Drain and wash through with lots of running cold water to cool it down quickly.
  4. In a serving bowl, mix the rice, butternut squash, chickpeas, pistachios, herbs and spring onions.
  5. Squeeze over the lime juice, drizzle over the oil, season with black pepper and mix to combine the flavours.


  • 225g rice
  • Half a butternut squash, cut into chunks and roasted
  • 1 tin chickpeas, drained
  • Handful pistachios, chopped
  • 2 large handfuls of green beans, trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon freshly torn basil
  • 1 dessertspoon freshly chopped coriander
  • 1 dessertspoon freshly chopped parsley, flat-leaved or curly
  • 4 spring onions, very finely chopped
  • Juice of a lime
  • A glug of olive, avocado or other good vegetable oil, plus extra for the butternut squash
  • Lots of freshly ground black pepper

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