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Friday, January 7, 2011

Mexican Rice naturally gluten-free

I needed rice to go along with my enchiladas. I wanted Mexican Rice. The kind I get with my Mexican food at Cucina Del Charro here in SoCal. I love to add rice and beans to a chip before a meal. I know, not the healthiest menu, but I did not say I was going for healthy. I am going for comfort food right now.  This recipe turned out fantastic. In the past when I have tried to make spanish rice, I added tomato sauce or paste and it never turned out right. I have to say this hit the spot.

1/3 cup olive oil
3 cups chopped yellow onions
1/3 cup chopped seeded jalapenos
1 tbsp garlic, minced
1 pinch of saffron ( you can omit if you dont have it. But I like the flavor it adds)
2 1/2 cups long-grain white rice
2 1/2 cups canned chicken broth or 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
2 tsp salt, or to taste, depending on the saltiness of the broth
2 tsp Southwest essence seasoning (see below for recipe)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Cheddar cheese for topping
Southwest Essence Seasoning: makes ½ cup
2 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tbsp paprika
1 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp ground coriander
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp dried oregano
Combine all ingredients thoroughly. Store in an airtight container.

Preheat the oven to 350. Heat the olive oil in a large oven safe saucepan with lid over medium heat. Add the onions and jalapenos, stirring until soft, about 5 minutes.
Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the rice and cook, stirring, until opaque, 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the broth, salt, and Southwest essence seasoning. Stir well and bring to a boil. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and transfer to the oven.

Bake until the rice is tender and the liquid is absorbed, 25 to 30 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Fluff the rice with a fork and stir in the cilantro, if desired. Add the cheese and serve warm.

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