Five Great Summer Rice Dishes
by L. Moses
Rice is one of those fantastic foods which goes with just about anything and makes summertime meal preparation quick and easy. Who wants to spend hours in a hot kitchen when the sun is shining and there’s laughter in the air?
Here are five great rice dishes to make summertime meals quick and delicious.
#1 Gallo Pinto (pictured above)
In Costa Rica rice is a staple, they even have it for breakfast. This tasty dish will help you start your day on the right foot.
Step One: Make one cup of white rice.
Step Two: You can make this ahead of time, the night before, and store it in your refrigerator. Sautee one small chopped onion in one tbsp of olive oil.
Step Three: Add one can of rinsed and drained black beans and one package of adobo sauce with cilantro and one tbsp of Lizano sauce. This is a salsa commonly found in Costa Rica. You can find it in your grocer or online.
Step Four: Refrigerate or set aside.
Step Five: Scramble two eggs in a nonstick pan. Add bean mixture and rice to egg mixture and serve.
#2 Chile-Cheese Burritos with Rice
Step One: Cook 1 cup of white rice.
Step Two: Sautee ½ cup shredded zucchini, ½ cup thinly sliced green onions, and 1 tbsp of canned chopped green chilies in a non-stick pan coated with cooking spray.
Step Three: Add rice to sautéed vegetables, cook for one minute, remove from heat and add 3 tbsp sour cream.
Step Four: Warm flour tortillas according to package directions. Place rice mixture in the center of the tortilla, top with 1 oz of Monterey jack cheese and roll up.
Step Five: Serve with chopped tomatoes, shredded lettuce and a dollop of salsa – enjoy!
#3 Fried Rice
This wonderfully easy recipe is great for leftover rice and makes a great quick and easy meal.
Step One: Heat 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil over medium high heat in large skillet or wok.
Step Two: Add one or two eggs to pan (depending on how eggy you like your fried rice) and 1 teaspoon of dark sesame oil. Stir fry for two minutes.
Step Three: Add three cups of cold rice and stir fry for three minutes.
Step Four: Add vegetables of choice to rice. Common ingredients include ½ cup peas, ¼ cup diced carrot, and ¼ cup chopped onion.
Step Five: Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve with soy sauce – enjoy!
#4 Summertime Rice Salad
Cold rice? You betcha! This great salad is best served cold and jam packed with healthy seasonal vegetables.
Step One: Cook two cups of white rice.
Step Two: Chop and combine 2 green onions, 2 to 3 cloves of garlic, crushed and finely minced, 1 small summer squash, 1 large tomato, 1/2 red bell pepper, 1 cup spinach leaves, rolled together tightly and very thinly sliced, 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley, 1 small carrot, grated or minced.
Step Three: In a small bowl combine: 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice and 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil.
Step Four: Pour lemon juice and oil dressing over vegetables. Cover and refrigerate for 30-60 minutes.
Step Five: Add rice to vegetable mixture and refrigerate or serve immediately.
#5 Rice Pudding.
We’ve covered breakfast, lunch, dinner and a salad, it’s time for dessert and what’s better than rice pudding?
Step One: Cook ¾ cup of your favorite rice. Basmati makes the best pudding.
Step Two: Combine 6 egg yolks and ¼ cup sugar in a small bowl and beat until smooth.
Step Three: Add the rice to the egg mixture and place in a shallow baking dish or pie pan.
Step Four: Place dish containing egg and rice mixture in a larger dish and add boiling water until it reaches halfway up the side of the egg mixture dish.
Step Five: Bake in a 250 degree oven for about an hour. Insert a knife in the center of the pudding. If it is done the knife will come out clean.
Step Six: Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.
Step Seven: Before serving sprinkle pudding with brown sugar and place under a pre-heated broiler for about one minute. Watch closely so it doesn’t burn! Serve warm or cold.
Rice makes a fine foundation for a wide range of meals, while it can certainly be enjoyed year around the simplicity makes it a great base for many summertime meals.
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