¡FIESTA con Spanish Rice!

May 2, 2011

Who doesn’t love Mexican food?! I do not think I have ever met anyone who legitimately does not like Mexican. Just imagine, perfectly salted tortilla chips dipped in chilled spicy salsa with a side of refried beans and guacamole and to top it all off a heaping mound of spanish rice! Sounds like a fiesta to me! Last thursday, our cooking class got to learn how to make this wonderful spanish rice. I can’t say I had ever made it before, so I was glad that we were all getting to learn the art of rice toasting and cooking.

*Hint: If you want a super satisfying meal, why not try making the easy enchiladas mentioned in the previous post by Saucy Sayre, with spanish rice as a side dish. The two items will surely compliment each other very nicely.

First, we got all of our ingredients ready: (Recipe by Simply Recipes)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (can use up to 1/4 cup)
  • 1/2 onion, chopped fine
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 cups of medium or long-grain white rice
  • 4.5 cups* chicken stock (or vegetable stock if vegetarian)
  • 3 heaping tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 Pinches of oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
*Check the instructions on the rice package for the proportions of liquid to rice. They can range from 1:1 to 2:1. If your rice calls for 2 cups of water for every cup of rice, then for this recipe, use 4 cups of stock for 2 cups of rice.
First, in a large skillet, mix brown rice and olive oil at medium/high heat. Then add the onion and garlic to the rice. Cook this mixture for about 4 minutes or until the onions are soft (make sure to stir frequently so nothing burns!)

Saucy Sayre preparing the rice.

We used a technique that Ms. Ruble called “toasting” the rice. It became a lovely golden brown color. As you can imagine, with the onions cooking, the aroma was incredible throughout the kitchen.
(Oh! And guess what guys, we had another minor kitchen fiasco, but don’t worry everything turned out beautifully in the end. As we were getting ready to add the onion to the rice, somehow, there was a slip of the hand and before I knew it there were onion chunks flying into my face. It was quite the comical experience, but don’t worry, everything was okay and we didn’t lose too much, thankfully. In fact, we still had plenty! Again, it is all part of the experience. I mean, gotta have a little fun, right?!)

The lovely rice and onions mixture.

In a seperate sauce pan pour the chicken stock and bring it to a simmer (some bubbles, but not quite boiling). Then add the tomato paste, oregano, and salt. Make sure to mix it all together well.
If it is taking a long time, you could always put a lid on the pot to help the heat stay in.

Stirring the broth.

Then, add the rice to the broth and bring to a simmer. Cover pan. Lower heat and cook for 15-25 minutes, depending on the type of rice and the instructions on the rice package. (Stir every now and then to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pan). Turn off the heat and let it sit for 5 minutes. Recipe yields: about 4 servings.
Learning how to cook Mexican food was perfect. Because I love it so much, I always end up spending most of my money going out to eat at Qdoba’s or Zapata’s Cantina, but now that I have learned the art of both enchilada and rice making, I can now save money and cook from my very own home.
Once the rice is finished cooling down a bit, it is ready to be served! One great thing about this rice is it can be personalized as well. Some like it plain while others like loading it up with cheese, sour cream, and silantro. Either way, it was delicious and totally easy to make! Just add a side of refried beans or some tortilla chips and you have a great snack right there. Muy Bien!
Usually, I am not a huge fan of rice because many variety’s tend to be not very flavorful, but this spanish rice had flavor to last for days! It was so so so good, and i’m not just saying that, it really was legit amazing.

Ta da!

And there you have it! Spanish rice, cooked to perfection, literally, topped with cheese and sour cream and garnished with silantro. Who’s ready to dig in?! I know I am!

This is Sophia Pizzeria, until next time! Adios and enjoy!

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