What is your go-to side dish? You know, the one that when you can’t think of anything else, it’s what your turn to. Mine is rice. I love rice. A pristine mountain of steamed white rice is a thing of beauty. Perhaps I love rice so much because I love my rice cooker so much. Or perhaps I love my rice cooker so much because I love rice so much. It’s the whole chicken and the egg thing.
When it comes to rice cookers, I admit, Zojirushi NS-ZCC18 10-Cup Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker and Warmer, Premium Whiteis the Cadillac. Of course, now they even make them with induction cooking. What I love about having a rice cooker is that it frees up the stove. I don’t need a pot or a burner. And for the most part, I don’t need to think. I toss everything in there, turn it on and forget it. It automatically switches to warm. This one also has a porridge setting, which makes the best overnight oatmeal ever. And if you have one of these, you simply must also have The Ultimate Rice Cooker Cookbook : 250 No-Fail Recipes for Pilafs, Risottos, Polenta, Chilis, Soups, Porridges, Puddings and More, from Start to Finish in Your Rice Cooker.
Well, now that I’ve gone on and on about rice cookers, let’s get back to my Gulf Coast-Style White Rice Pilaf, shall we. If rice is my go-to side dish, this is my go-to rice. It goes with everything. Surprisingly enough, it actually came from
|Mexican Everyday (Recipes Featured on Season 4 of the PBS-TV series "Mexico One Plate at a Time")|
Rick (and I feel like I can call him Rick), even gives instructions for doing this recipe in a rice cooker. That’s the other beauty of the rice cooker, you can use just about any rice recipe in the cooker (though sometimes you have to play with the amounts of the liquid). Whenever a recipe calls for sautéing the rice or aromatics first, I simply turn on my rice cooker and sauté it in there, then add the rest of the ingredients, close the lid and off it goes. Since some of you might not have rice cookers (shock!), I’m going to post his original directions.
Gulf Coast-Style White Rice Pilaf
- 1 1/2 T vegetable oil or olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups white rice
- 1 small white onion, chopped in 1/4 inch pieces
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely minced
- 1 3/4 cups chicken broth
- 3 T. coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
Turn on the oven to 350 and position a rack in the middle. Set a medium (3-quart) ovenproof saucepan over medium heat). Add the toil, rice and onion. Stir frequently until the grains of rice turn from translucent to milky-white, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and saute a few seconds until fragrant, then add the chicken broth, 1 t. salt). Stir and then let it come to a full boil.
Cover and place in the oven. Bake 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let it sit for 5 minutes.
Fluff the rice with a fork and garnish with parsley.