Vegan AND gluten-free? I know I've been posting all sorts of gluten-free things lately (brownies, cake, etc.) — but don't get any ideas. I'm still very much on the gluten-train. I have, however, been experimenting with all sorts of things that are new to me! Rice loaf? Never made one, until now! I had planned on cracking an egg in there to hold it all together, but decided to go with flax instead: perfect!
I was, honestly, a little surprised by how delicious this was. I wasn't completely expecting to love it, but (as Derek said), it's almost good enough to have for dessert! The apricots definitely give some sweetness, and the walnuts add a crunch I wouldn't go without. Black rice has become a favorite around here recently (as they sell it at Costco and it's apparently really good for you!).
I started with cold, leftover rice. I cooked up some onions and garlic, added tomato paste and spices, then mixed it all together with the chopped dried apricots and chopped walnuts. The ground flax, mixed with some hot water, works as a glue and binds everything together. Bake the loaf for about 40 minutes, and you're ready to go!
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- ½ onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp oregano
- 3 Tbsp tomato paste
- 3 cups cooked black rice
- ½ cup dried apricots, chopped
- ½ cup walnuts, chopped
- 1 sliced jalapeño pepper (seeds removed for less heat)
- salt + pepper
- 3 Tbsp ground flax seeds
- ½ cup boiling water
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease a loaf pan and line it with parchment paper.
- In a heavy skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and cook for about 5 minutes, until soft.
- Add the smoked paprika and oregano, and cook for one minute before adding the tomato paste. Cook for another 2 minutes, then remove from heat.
- Stir the onion mixture together with the rice, apricots, walnuts, and jalapeño. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- In a separate container, mix the flax and boiling water together. The mixture should thicken. Add more water if it is too gel-like. Pour over the rice, and mix well so it is fully incorporated.
- Pour the rice mixture into the prepared loaf tin, press gently in and flatten the top.
- Bake for 35-45 minutes. The top should be dry to the touch. Remove and let cool 5 minutes before removing from the tin.