Cook rice according to package directions with salt and water (butter, optional). When the rice has cooled a bit, transfer to a large mixing bowl and combine gently with the black beans, which have been rinsed and drained.
Chop the red onion and taste to see if it's too strong for an uncooked salad. If strong, soak the onion in cold water, spiked with a bit of sugar and vinegar, for 10 minutes.
Drain onion and add to rice mixture, along with the jicama, olives and both bell peppers.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add ham; saute, stirring, 2 to 3 minutes, adding the minced garlic for the last minute of cooking. Add ham mixture to rice.
Add the remaining 3 tablespoons oil to a small jar. Add vinegar, cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper in small jar with lid. Shake well and drizzle the dressing over the salad.
Toss with a fork and taste for salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature for best flavor.
Recipes adapted from the USA Rice Council in Houston, Texas.