Rice and Pecan Salad with Orange-Thyme Dressing
- 1 (6-ounce) package long-grain and wild rice pilaf mix (we tested with Near East)
- 1 tablespoon grated orange rind
- 1/3 cup fresh orange juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, minced
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 3/4 cup dried cranberries or sweetened dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 1/4 cup sliced green onions
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans, toasted
- Garnish: fresh thyme sprigs
- Prepare rice mix according to package directions, omitting spice packet. Transfer to a large bowl, and fluff with a fork. Set aside.
- Whisk together orange rind and next 5 ingredients in a small bowl. Slowly add oil, whisking constantly. Set dressing aside.
- Add cranberries and next 3 ingredients to rice mix; toss gently.
- Add dressing, and toss to coat. Cover and chill at least 3 hours. Add pecans just before serving. Garnish, if desired.
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