Dark, unique, and unexpected, this fabulous dish will wow the guests at your next dinner party. The bright, tropical colors of the fruit contrast beautifully with the black rice, making a stunning presentation.

Rice Ingredients:

  • 3 cups lightly salted water
  • 1½ cups black rice, rinsed and drained
  • 2 ripe mangoes, peeled, pitted, and diced (about 2 cups)
  • ¾ cup pomegranate seeds
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1 ripe Hass avocado

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup pomegranate or
orange juice
  • 2 tbsp. honey or agave
  • 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper


  1. Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add rice; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 35-40 minutes. The rice should be tender but slightly chewy. Remove from heat, let stand, covered, for 10-15 minutes. Transfer to a large serving bowl; let cool.
  2. Add mangoes, pomegranate seeds, scallions, and basil to the serving bowl.
  3. Dressing: Combine ingredients for dressing in a glass jar; seal tightly and shake well.
  4. Shortly before serving, peel, pit, and dice avocado. Add avocado and dressing to rice mixture; toss gently to combine. Serve at room temperature.

Yields: 6-8 servings

Norene’s Notes

  • In China, black rice was called “forbidden rice,” as it was considered the finest grain and served only to the royal family.
  • How to seed a pomegranate: Score around the middle of the pomegranate, but do not cut through. Twist to separate pomegranate into two halves. Invert one half in your palm over a bowl, seeds facing down. With a wooden spoon, firmly tap the skin several times to release the seeds into the bowl. Pick out and discard the white pith. Repeat with second pomegranate half. Seeds will keep fresh for 2-3 days in the fridge in a covered container.
  • Instead of mangoes, substitute 2 cans (11 oz/312 g each) mandarin oranges, well-drained.