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About Me

Phoenix, Arizona, United States
The most important thing in my life is my family. I love my dear husband and 4 wonderful children (ages 11 through 18). I am a stay-at-home mom (my dream job!). Some of my favorite things to do include cooking (and eating!), photography, reading, piano, flute, watching my favorite TV shows, swimming, traveling, and most recently...using the rip stick with my kids. I would love to attend culinary school someday & fit my love of photography in with that somehow. My dream vacation is Italy - something I was recently blessed to experience! I'd love to return and see more of that beautiful and DELICIOUS country! My days are usually full of running kids to and from activities - scouts, sports, music and church. Sometimes I have to remind myself to breathe, but I absolutely LOVE my crazy life and the people I am lucky enough to share it with!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

RICE PILAF WITH TOMATOES AND OLIVES (from Robin Miller Quick-Fix Meals)


Sure, you could buy a rice pilaf "kit" at the grocery store. But then who controls the ingredients? I like to spruce up quick-cooking rice with my own ideas! In this case, I add diced tomatoes and oil-cured olives for a sensational Italian twist. No tomatoes or olives? Add roasted red peppers and capers. For added flavor, cook the rice in chicken or vegetable broth instead of water.
2 cups quick-cooking white rice
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
One 14-ounce can petite-cut diced tomatoes, drained
1/4 cup diced oil-cured black olives
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cook the rice according to the package directions. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat.

Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the oregano and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and olives and cook until the liquid reduces, about 1 minute. Add the rice and cook 1 minute to heat through, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat and stir in the parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Save leftover rice from Chinese take-out and freeze it in plastic bags. Thaw the rice in the microwave for 2 to 3 minutes on LOW and turn it into this pilaf (simply combine everything together and heat in the microwave until hot).

Total Time: 10 to 12 minutes

You can make the pilaf up to 3 days in advance and refrigerate until ready to serve. Reheat in the microwave for 3 minutes on HIGH. You can also double the recipe and freeze for up to 3 months; thaw in the refrigerator or microwave for a few minutes on LOW and then reheat for 1 to 2 minutes on HIGH.

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