Monday, November 1, 2010

Ditch the Processed Packet: Spanish Rice

Spanish Rice

For the longest time, I used to make flavored rice mixes from a packet. Full of things like chicken fat, maltodextrin, potassium choloride, and disodium inosinate, they really aren't the best things for you and have a lot of preservatives and salt. Why not make your own? Does it really make a difference?

Oh, baby, you bet it does. Full of spicy goodness, this version of Spanish/Mexican rice will have you saying "ole!" before you scarf it all down greedily. The heat of your salsa will determine the heat of the finished product, so if you would prefer something a little milder, make sure to use a milder salsa.

Adapted from Looneyspoons by Janet and Greta Podleski

1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup diced red pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
2 1/3 cups low sodium chicken broth (I used Kitchen Basics Vegetable Broth)
1 cup long grain white rice
1 cup salsa (I used Newman's own Black Bean and Corn)
1/2 tsp each chili powder and ground cumin
1/4 tsp salt and black pepper
chopped fresh cilantro

In a large saucepan, drizzle some oil on the bottom and set over medium heat to warm up. When the oil is hot, toss in your onion, sweet red pepper, and garlic. Stir around and let it cook until the onions are clear and soft, about 5 minutes or so. Stir in the rice, chicken broth, salsa, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper (optional). Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low and partially cover. Cook another 25-30 minutes until tender and all the liquid is absorbed. Remove from the heat, fluff with a fork, and serve!

Serves six.
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