The Confused Salad

The Confused Salad

It’s a confused salad because it contains a lot of fruit for a savoury salad. It started out to be something different. And although it turned out nice in the end it’s a bit odd.

So yesterday I only used half of the roasted chickpeas in the Friendly Dragon Breakfast Bowl. And I also had some rice leftover. I actually still have quite a lot of rice leftover. I made a mini mountain of boiled rice on Sunday. You know one of these things you do convinced that it’s going to make you more organised for the week ahead. And instead it’s not what you need at all and it’s just taking up space in the fridge.

I guess I can freeze it.

I do llike the Friendly Dragon Breakfast Bowl. Worked out grand. One thing though if you are thinking of making it the night before, add the avocado-yoghurt-mix in the morning because it turned greyish overnight. It tastes fine. But it looks terrible. I actually bought a dragon fruit today – think I might try adding it and take more photos. Just so as the name makes more sense. Not everyone sees the stuff I see in the photos. Just as well really.

But back to this recipe. You know the Brown Rice Salad? It’s a Delia Smith recipe so of course it’s great. Well, I thought why don’t I make a similar kind of salad with the leftover garam masala rice and the roasted chickpeas? And perhaps if I had stuck to the exact same recipe apart from rice and beans it would have been fine. But that isn’t what I did.

What I did was find some dried cranberries in the press and I thought I’ll add them. And I love carrots. Raw, roasted or in stews, I love them. So I added some grated carrot. Added in apple for even more sweetness. Some celery – the nice leafy sweet inner stalks. Just a teaspoon of diced onion. Some walnuts. And then I used a dressing of lemon juice mixed with sunflower oil, mustard powder, salt and pepper. And then just added a bit of parsley.

It tasted wrong. So I added a fistful of raisins. Then I ate a plate of it. The whole time thinking – no, this tastes … not … not right… And then I wrote the recipe post for yesterday. Which is why I’m prattling on about things not tasting right in a recipe that’s actually good.

Anyway I had this idea that it might be better with mango. I didn’t want to add it though because it would be such a waste of a mango if it didn’t work. But after writing about how sometimes the thing I think will make it better does I decided to add it in. It is just a mango after all. It tasted better but still odd. I wasn’t sure if I was going to post the recipe. It tasted alright – but still … odd.

So I left it overnight. And actually once the flavours have blended together this tastes – yes, a little unusual – but good. It tastes very similar to the sorts of salads you can buy at salad bars in supermarkets. You know the sort of thing with yellow rice, some seeds or nuts or beans or something, and big raisins? It tastes sort of like that.

Isn’t it too cold for a salad though? Yeah. But I have this mini-mountain of rice…

But it will be summertime again … sometime … maybe?

This will be good in warmer weather. – Because have to leave it in the fridge for a couple of hours. So it’s not just a salad – it’s a brr cold salad. Or as I would say in the summertime – it’s very refreshing.


And the protein?

OK yesterday the online calculator was wildly optimistic about the amount of protein in the dish. Today it seems to be decidely conservative in its calculations. So this recipe makes a full meal-sized portion for 4. And the calculator is saying that gives about 6g of protein per serving. That doesn’t seem right. I’ll be conservative, in my fashion, and say it offers about 8g of protein per serving.

Why? Sure why not.

Look unless I’m using packets that label how much protein their in a 100g serving I’ve no idea how much there is.

I guess I had better not mention it if I’m not sure…

Besides protein this is full of fibre, vitamins and minerals. Click on some of the ingredients below for their benefits:

some of the ingredients for confused salad ingredients
The first set of ingredients: brown rice fried in garam masala, chickpeas roasted in curry powder and smoked paprika, apple, dried cranberries, walnuts, onion, carrots, parlsey, lemon, sunflower oil, mustard powder, salt and pepper.

The Confused Salad

Serves 4 - 6

The Confused Salad


  • 200g brown cooked rice, fried in a little oil, sprinkled with lots of garam masala and salt
  • 1/2 tin chickpeas, rinsed, drained, sprinkled with curry powder and smoked paprika, roasted for 10 - 15 mins at 200 C
  • 1 sweet crisp apple, cored and sliced
  • 2 carrots, peeled & grated
  • 4 - 5 leafy white celery stalks, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon diced mild onion
  • some dried cranberries
  • fistful of raisins
  • 1 mango, peeled, stoned and diced
  • parsley
  • For the dressing
  • Strained juice of one lemon
  • Same volume sunflower oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder
  • large pinch of salt and pepper


  1. To make the dressing, add the mustard and lemon juice in a jar and mix till it's smooth then add in the ingredients in a jar and shake until it's all well combined.
  2. Place the rice in a deep bowl. Pour the dressing over the rice and mix around. Then combine in the rest of the ingredients one lot at a time. Leave the parsley for garnish when serving.
  3. Cover and leave in the fridge for at least two hours. Serve with a good sprinkling of freshly chopped parsley.

lemon dressing
Equal parts lemon juice and sunflower oil, combined with 1 teaspoon of mustard powder, good pinch of salt and pepper.
So I tasteted it. It didn’t taste right somehow. The smoky taste from the chickpeas was making things bitter. So I added in a fistful of raisins.
I ate all of this. I didn’t really enjoy it.
So I ate a plateful of the salad with the raisins added in thinking “No. It’s still a bit wrong. It just tastes weird.” And then I thought about adding some mango.
With the mango added in, and left to chill for a couple of hours, it tastes like a rice and beans salad that you’d find at the salad bar in a supermarket. It’s sweet and gently smokily spiced. It’s nice but it’s kinda odd. I like it.