How many of those boxed “pilaf-y” things do you have in your pantry? You know — the ones with the flavor packets? I think they’re fine in a pinch, but they contain a lot of sodium (bad for your blood pressure) and I’m dubious of the dehydrated glutamate powder in those foil packages.
So in the name of health and being able to pronounce most of the ingredients in my dinner, I’ve put together a pilaf-ish rice dish that’s cheaper, tastier and healthier.
Rice is one of the least expensive grains on the market today. As much as I like quinoa and farro, they are 4-5 times the price of a bag of rice. Even the jasmine rice I used was less than $2 for a large bag. For this dish, just saut? the onions and rice with a little olive oil, stir in some turmeric, golden raisins and broth and simmer until tender. That’s it.
I like adding toasting pignoli (pine nuts) for crunch and parsley for color and brightness. Season to taste with salt or pepper. Serve this tempting side dish with roast chicken, pork or fish. Easy-peasy!
jeweled yellow rice and pignoli
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion peeled and diced
- 1 cup jasmine rice
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 1/2 cups low salt vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the pine nuts on a baking sheet and cook until lightly toasted, about 5 minutes. Be mindful, pine nuts burn quickly. Set aside.
Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Add the chopped onion and rice. Cook, stirring frequently to prevent sticking, 4-5 minutes until onions begin to soften and rice begins to take on some color. Stir in the turmeric and kosher salt until rice turns a golden yellow. Add the golden raisins and vegetable broth and heat to boiling. Reduce heat to medium low, cover with a tight fitting lid and cook for 15 minutes or until rice is tender. (You can add additional broth 1-2 tablespoons at a time, if necessary)
Stir in the pine nuts and chopped parsley. Serve.