Category Archives: Rice

Thai Red Curry with Chicken and Peanuts

Thai Red Curry with Chicken and Peanuts

Curries are one of my favorite things to make. Besides being fairly easy to prep and cook, the results are often outstanding! This curry combines thinly sliced chicken, butternut squash and peanuts in a red curry sauce. You can’t really get much better than that! The best thing about this recipe is the layering of the flavors that come from the coconut milk, peanuts and red curry paste. When I’m in a pinch I buy a pre-made red curry paste from a local Thai market but when I’m in no hurry I just make it from scratch. The sauce is rich but refreshing at the same time–perfect for a cooler summer night’s dinner. I served the curry with rice and garnished each plate with green onions, fresh mint and plenty of peanuts and lime juice.
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Jambalaya

Jambalaya

Jambalaya is the ultimate Louisiana comfort food. This rice dish combines spicy Andouille sausage, shrimp and creole spices in a large skillet and slow cooked over the stove. There are lots of variations of Jambalaya so it’s a fun dish to experiment with. A great trick to get some of that briny shrimp flavor into the rice is cooking the shells in the chicken stock, effectively making a super quick shrimp stock.  I went to the local butcher for the Andouille (which I would recommend for the boost in quality and flavor) but you can find it in most grocery stores as well. I pre-make my Creole seasoning which I keep in a marked jar in the spice cabinet. This recipe can easily be served as a main course but also works well as a side to many other Creole dishes. I garnished the dish with plenty of Louisiana-style hot sauce and chopped green onions.
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Homemade Mexican Rice

Homemade Spanish Rice

Mexican rice (also known as “Spanish” rice) is a savory rice dish flavored with tomatoes and spices. Mexican rice holds up well on its own and makes a great accompaniment to beef, chicken, fish, tacos, enchiladas…the list goes on! It goes well with tons of different dishes and is pretty easy to make. You start by toasting the rice in a saute pan. Toasting it first enhances the flavor and is considered an essential step. I would recommend using homemade chicken or vegetable stock to give it an extra boost of nutrients and flavor!
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Turkey Sausage Soup with White Beans and Wild Rice

Turkey Sausage Soup with White Beans and Wild Rice

After Thanksgiving the food fest continues with new ways to make tasty leftovers! This recipe uses sausage but can be substituted for leftover turkey instead. It’s a perfect comfort food recipe as the days get colder and the nights get longer.  It didn’t take long to throw together either! The beans, wild rice and corn made it a very hearty meal.  I had never used turkey sausage in soup but it added some really nice flavors. I used a homemade chicken broth instead of store bought which enhanced the flavor of the soup quite a bit.  The rice absorbs a lot of the broth so make sure to have extra on hand to add in later.

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Moroccan Rice Pudding

pudding

My mom always loved rice pudding, especially if it was from this one grocery store, Jewel, which according to her, “did rice pudding right.” This recipe is made for her because not only is she far away from any Jewel grocery store, she can make a batch of this at home in no time at all. This recipe has way more flavor than any pre-made rice pudding. Adding cinnamon and orange flower water gives the pudding a more traditional Moroccan flavor. The pudding was creamy with just the right type of consistency. You can also garnish the pudding with nutmeg, cinnamon and toasted almond slivers.

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Egg Fried Rice

Egg Fried Rice

This recipe is based on the American Chinese food classic: egg fried rice. Now instead of ordering take-out I can whip up a batch of fried rice on the cheap and in no time at all. This recipe is probably a lot healthier compared to the fried rice at Chinese restaurants. You can give the rice a boost by adding more veggies like bean sprouts, green onion, or baby corn. I had some leftover Korean BBQ Chicken and served it with the rice which was very tasty!  You can also add a protein to the rice (like chicken, tofu or pork) to make it more of a main course too.

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Saudi Arabian Black Lemon Roasted Chicken

I first heard about this recipe from my mom who had been talking about this “great chicken recipe that uses black lemons.”  I had never made Saudi Arabian food before so I was looking forward to trying out a new dish.  The recipe uses black lemons which is different from preserved lemons which I make pretty often.  The black lemons are actually limes that are dried and turned black.  They taste sour and citrusy, but the fact they are dried gives them a slightly smoky, fermented taste.  The black lemons are used to flavor the dish like a bay leaf but aren’t really eaten (though they do soften up after cooking so I suppose you could eat them).  The recipe is simple and takes roughly about 30 minutes to prepare.  I loved how the black lemons flavored the chicken, tomatoes and onions.  The chicken is served with rice and garnished with sauteed slivered almonds, golden raisins, onions and seasoned with cinnamon.  All of the ingredients worked so well together and I have a feeling I will be exploring other ways to use that tasty almond and raisin garnish.

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Classic Beef Chili

I guess I always overlooked beef chili a bit. This is probably because I didn’t care much for ground beef for a long time. Lately I have been enjoying this chili recipe because it is so simple and tasty. It gets points for the amount of ingredients (you can count them on one hand.) That is definitely not the norm for chilies which can require up to 20 ingredients! This chili should be cooked on a heavy bottomed saute pan where it slow cooks for about an hour. I like the taste of grass-fed ground beef so I use it for this recipe.  The amount of hot sauce to add into the chili is really up to personal tastes. I like it on the spicy side so I add approximately 1/4 cup.  I topped the chili with sharp cheddar and it can be served on top of rice or with corn bread.

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Achiote Black Bean Tacos with Grilled Avocado and Goat Cheese

Who knew you could grill avocados? I had no idea until I read the recipe for these tacos. I loved the idea of tangy goat cheese coupled with the avocado slices and honey lime dressing.  It sounded like the perfect quick summer meal so I knew I had to give it a try!  I thought a good spice blend of black beans seasoned with achiote seed, cumin, coriander and smoked paprika would be a great addition to these tacos.  The avocados had a slightly different flavor after grilling that was unique and hard to describe.  I guess the flavor became a little more smokey with a stronger avocado smell.  The tacos were really good! I especially liked the simple honey lime dressing to give the filling some brightness.

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Kaha Bath (Sri Lankan Yellow Rice)

Kaha Bath is a simple Sri Lankan rice dish made with turmeric and coconut milk.  The dish isn’t sweet, but savory with flavors of turmeric, cardamom, and cloves.  The coconut milk provides a nice creaminess to the rice and I loved how the turmeric dyed the rice bright yellow.  The great thing about this rice is that the flavors of curry aren’t overpowering and you can serve it alongside another curry dish.  It would also work as the main course if you mixed a protein like egg, chicken or tofu into the rice.

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