Meatless Monday: Forbidden Rice

I recently came across forbidden rice.  Immediately I was intrigued.  For one thing it was new to me, I had never actually heard of it.  Maybe I am behind the times and not as food savvy as I would like to believe but there it is, the cold hard truth.  Up until a few months ago I had no idea this obsidian colored, chewy textured, gem of a rice even existed.  Being the somewhat adventurous eater I am, (I suppose this really doesn’t speak volumes about my adventurous spirit, after all this is just rice) I purchased a bag.  What would we do with it?

     Our first time with forbidden rice was to contribute it to my brother’s dinner of coconut poached mahi-mahi.  It served as a wonderful bed on which succulent bits of fish and torn bok choy finally and temporarily rested before it was soon devoured.  The rice was unexpected.  Soft and chewy with a slight nuttiness, it had more heft then the usual rice I was accustomed to.  This could be due to the fact it is packed with minerals and antioxidants.  An excellent source of phosphorus, molybdenum, manganese, magnesium, and anthocyanins the same antioxidant that imparts the beautiful pigment to blueberries and acai. It was delicious.
     After my first taste of forbidden rice, I couldn’t stop thinking about what I would make next.  A lover of salads including rice salads I began to muse over one made with forbidden rice.  To compliment the unusual exotic character I feel forbidden rice has, I went exotic with the mix-ins.  Fresh pomegranate, ripe mango, and fragrant cilantro round out the ingredients in this salad which is punctuated with a light citrus dressing.  Forbidden rice once reserved for only the elite and noble now graces the humblest of tables.  For me it was a nice refreshing lunch on this otherwise average Monday.

Forbidden Rice & Fruit Salad with Avocado Lime Dressing serves 2-4


Recipe by Jordan


  • 1 cup forbidden rice
  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 1 lime zested
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 1 mango
  • 2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 3 Tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • few pinches salt


  1. Combine 1 cup rice, 1 3/4 cups water and a pinch of salt. Bring to boil over high heat then reduce to simmer, cover and cook for 30 minutes. Remove from heat. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  2. Prepare fruit as rice is cooling. Peel and chop mango, peel and remove pomegranate seeds placing fruit in large bowl.
  3. Zest lime placing zest in smaller mixing bowl. Juice lime adding 2 tbsp of juice to zest.
  4. Add in avocado oil and honey. Season with salt to taste.
  5. Once rice has cooled completely add to bowl with prepared fruit, stirring gently to combine.
  6. Pour dressing over salad, adding in cilantro and stir to combine.
  7. Serve immediately or may be stored in refrigerator and served cold.
Note: We found it is best to eat this the same day it is made.


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