Monday, February 16, 2009
Green (Spinach) Rice on the Side
Last night, I made cheese enchiladas with a crumbling "queso fresco" I purchased at a local Latin market. While I would normally make a yellow rice using very good quality saffron to accompany a Latin dish, I decided to try making a green rice. The rice I made to accompany the enchiladas came from the book, "Moosewood Restaurant Simple Suppers: Fresh Ideas for the Weeknight Table," published by the Moosewood Collective. I was surprised by how flavorful the green rice tasted, especially considering the recipe called for using water, as opposed to vegetable stock, and spinach, as opposed to, say, cilantro.
I always make extra rice for dinner, which I top with a fried egg for breakfast the next day. (Heat the cold rice in the microwave for about a minute.) With leftover white rice, I will also drizzle some soy sauce on top. Growing up, I probably had fried eggs over rice for breakfast at least 5 times a week, because I just really disliked boxed cereals.
Approximately 4 Servings
1 1/2 cups white rice
1 tablespoon vegetable oil or olive oil
2 1/4 cups water
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 cups loosely packed spinach (about 3 ounces)
pinch of black pepper
Heat oil in a saucepan under medium heat and saute the rice in the oil to coat each grain, about 1 minute. Add the water and salt, bring to a boil, cover, and reduce the heat to very low. Cook rice until all of the water is absorbed, about 15-20 minutes.
While the rice cooks, coarsely chop the scallions and, if necessary, rinse the spinach. (I used a half bag of pre-rinsed spinach.) In a large skillet, saute the scallions in 2 teaspoons of oil, about 1-2 minutes. Add the spinach and pepper to the skillet. Cover and cook until the spinach has just wilted but is still bright green, about 2 minutes. In a blender, puree the spinach and scallions until smooth. Add a little bit of water, no more than a 1/4 cup, if necessary.
When the rice is done cooking, stir in the spinach/scallion puree, fluff the rice with a fork, and serve.