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Posts Tagged ‘rice’

This unusual rice pilaf makes a great side dish for baked chicken or grilled meat. The combination of sweet/savory and tart/buttery flavors is delicious.  I imagine it would even be good using a prepared saffron rice mix (steamed, not boiled as this recipe calls for) in a pinch.  But what I like about making your own saffron rice is that the flavor is subtle, and you avoid the MSG lurking in packaged products.

In any case, try this!  It’s such a nice twist.

(Adapted from Food & Wine)

-1 c. basmati rice
-3 Tbsp. butter
-1 tsp. olive oil
-1/4 c. dried sour cherries, raisins, or dried cranberries (2 ounces)
-2 tsp. sugar
-1/3 c. sliced or slivered almonds
-1/4 tsp. saffron
-salt and pepper, to taste

1. Toast the almonds in a dry skillet on medium heat, stirring to prevent burning. Once brown, immediately remove almonds to a bowl.

2. Preheat the oven to 375F. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the rice and cook until almost tender, between 8 and 10 minutes. Test periodically to ensure the rice retains a slight “al dente” bite.

3. Drain rice in a colander and shake to remove excess water. In a small bowl, dissolve the saffron in 1 tablespoon of hot water. Return the rice to the saucepan and stir in the saffron water. Season with salt and (ideally white) pepper.

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You know those nights when you stumble home after a long day’s work, wearily open the fridge, and nearly cry from exhaustion and lack of inspiration? The nights you’d call for takeout, but feel embarassed because the person taking orders can recognize your voice? Those cereal-for-dinner nights?

Me?

I’ve had a few of those lately.  My husband and I pulled off our DIY wedding a couple weeks ago and have been slowly recovering.  Mostly by refusing to do much of anything aside from gorge ourselves on wedding cake (more on that later).  Apologies for the blogging hiatus.

I’m not entirely back up to speed, but tonight I dipped a toe back in the cooking water with a one-pot dish that was on the table in under 40 minutes.  It’s amazing how a few fresh ingredients can transform ho hum packaged rice mix into a savory, delicious meal. The results are worth the little bit of effort.  No claims as to the authenticity of this jambalaya, but it sure beats General Tso’s when you’re worn out.

 

jambalaya
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