• Brown rice isn’t the only whole-grain rice – wild rice and exotic hues like purple, black and red rice are also whole grains.
• Brown rice – and all rice – is gluten-free.
• Pears contain soluble fiber to help lower cholesterol and phytonutrients that help prevent premature aging.
• Add a little extra cheese and turn this side salad into a vegetarian main dish.
• Walnuts are the only nut with a significant source of heart-healthy omega-3 fats.
Smart Selection, Storage & Prep
• Brown rice comes in so many different forms you’ll easily find one to meet your time schedule. There’s long cooking in bags, quick/fast cooking in boxes or already-cooked pouches that just need microwaving.
• While you can substitute quick-cooking or microwave rice, they both have a slightly chewier, denser texture and this will affect the overall quality of the salad.
• Red pears give this salad the most color, but use any pear variety you like.
• Standard crumbled blue cheese and even crumbled feta can replace Gorgonzola if desired.
• Be creative and try pecans, cashews or almonds instead of walnuts.
• White balsamic vinegar has a slightly milder flavor than traditional dark balsamic vinegar.