Black rice with summer tomatoes, avocado and Marcona almonds

This salad amounts to more than the same of its parts.As ever when you are going simple, the quality of the ingredients is of paramount importance.

Choose the best, ripest, British tomatoes you can find and keep them at rom temperature (never fridged) to allow their flavour to shine. Only use perfectly ripe avocados and get your hands on some salted and roasted Marcona almonds (the supreme king of their nutty world hierarchy!). As ever use only your best most flavourful olive oil and vinegar and you can’t go far wrong… It’s summer in a snapshot and well worth making at this time of year. The rice can be cooked and stored in the fridge the day before, making it the perfect throw together lunch.



A few large handfuls of Italian black rice (I allow one large handful per person)
Vegetable or a light chicken stock (fresh ideally)
British tomatoes (heritage varieties if you can get them)
Perfectly ripe avocados
A bag of salted and roasted Marcona almonds (or the best quality almonds you can get hold of)
Fresh thyme leaves and flowers
A few glugs of an aged sherry vinegar
A few slugs of extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper


Cook your rice in the stock, topped up with fresh water to cover if necessary, till just past al dente – you want to retain the tiniest bit of bite
Drain and return the warm rice to the pan and season it with the vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper – the flavours will absorb better if you do this while the rice is still warm
The rice should be slick with the dressing and noticeably rich with the flavour of the sherry vinegar and oil and well seasoned with salt and pepper
Allow the rice to cool slightly before throwing the salad together – check the seasoning, and adjust if necessary, once more before assembling your salad
To arrange your salad, clank up the tomatoes into irregular pieces and peel the avocados and chop them into irregualr chunks as well
Gently toss the rice with the tomato and avocado pieces and then pile it all onto a flat serving dish
Roughly chop the almonds and scatter them over the top along with the thyme leaves and flowers if you have them
Drizzle with a little extra olive oil and a spritz of sherry vinegar if you see fit

Louisa Chapman-Andrews
Cook Folk

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