Rice is one of those staples that translates in any culture. Mexican rice isn't any different here in this instance. Mexican Rice, here, is a long grain rice that is seasoned with tomato, garlic, onion, cilantro and chicken stock it. The savory dish works well as a side dish as well as a one of the components that goes into a burrito.
Here it will be used as a side dish for our Beef Chimichangas. However Mexican rice in a number of recipes can be also a Vegetarian, Vegan dish. Rice is filling enough that it could be used as a main meal. Remove the chicken stock combine it with some other vegetables and you could use it for a taco filling.
If you switch out the long grain rice for some brown rice, wow, now you have a healthy dish. That was pretty easy as well, we used a different rice in the same recipe. The fact that brown rice is a whole grain and offers stability and slow glucose release means you will feel full longer. Brown rice can be substituted in most rice dishes with the only drawback that it takes longer to cook.
Mexican Rice with Vegetables could be Vegetarian or Vegan
Why not make this more of a dish, how about making Mexican Rice with Vegetables or even making it Vegetarian or Vegan. If this is your way of eating rice is one of the greatest ways to do it. You can easily turn a side dish into a full meal pretty easily.
The first thing you should do is remove the white long grain rice and replace it with brown rice. The next thing you should do is think of which vegetables you would like to add. Some thoughts on this would be, peas, asparagus(needs to be partially cooked), edamame or Lima beans(need to be cooked).
When a vegetable is frozen it automatically is blanched, or partially cooked. When making this rice with the addition of vegetables you could merely thaw them out under running cold water. This will thaw the vegetable out and then you can fold them into your cooked rice dish at the final stage. The heat will heat them up and they will hold their color. If you cook peas in the rice for the entire time they will be overcooked and loose their bright appealing color.
When making this style you would use vegetable stock in place of chicken stock. Once you do this and do not add any meat then you have a vegetarian or Vegan dish. If this is your desire you have landed a satisfying filling dish.
Mexican Rice with Salsa
A quick easy way to make Mexican rice is to add salsa to your rice before cooking. The salsa could be a variety of different flavors. You could take a traditional red salsa or a roasted corn and black bean, tomatillo salsa or mango salsa to name a few and add them to your rice mixture. Then cook your rice with the salsa's in the rice. This is one way for you to utilize salsa with your Mexican rice.
Another way for you to enjoy Mexican Rice with Salsa is to add the salsa to your prepared Mexican Rice once it is completed. You would add this as a condiment to the rice This will give your rice a different flavor without the flavors being affected by the cooking process. The Salsa adds a nice compliment in contrasting flavor, texture and temperature to your rices.
Salsa is also a low fat way to get flavor into your foods. The addition in rice provides great flavor. The concept of a burrito bowl or rice bowl allows for a prepared rice such as our Mexican rice dish here to have additional ingredients such as meat, salsa, sour cream cheese and even guacamole. These make a great alternative to the wraps which provide not only an option for less carbs, but options to build your own.
By building your own you could have a vegetarian option as well as an option loaded with meat and cheeses. Whichever option you so choose, it certainly makes for an option filled meal.
5 easy steps in this Mexican Rice step by step recipe
- Purchase ingredients
- You will want to make sure you have long grain rice, chicken stock, tomatoes for dicing, cilantro, limes for juice or lime juice, onion or shallots, garlic, tomato juice, smoked paprika (optional) or chili powder
- Do your vegetable preparations
- You will want to measure out your ingredients, cut and chop vegetables according to your recipe instrucitons
- Steps to getting your rice started
- You will saute in a pan your onions, and diced tomatoes, if you add peppers you would saute them here as well
- Cooking on the stove top or in the oven
- Put all your ingredients in the sauce pot and simmer with the lid on or place in casserole dish and cover with foil, bake for 45 - 60 minutes with a convectional oven or 90 - 120 minutes in a conventional oven. Cook until rice is tender and or your liquid stock is gone.
- Finishing your rice
- When your rice is complete you should remove it and stir with a large spoon. Place in a serving bowl and garnish with chopped cilantro and/or lime zest.
- 1 pint Rice, long grain converted
- 2/3 tsp Smoked Paprika
- 8 oz Tomato Juice
- 1 tsp Garlic minced
- 4 oz Onion finely chopped
- 1 oz Vegetable Oil
- 8 oz Tomato diced
- 24 oz Stock chicken
- 1.5 tsp Juice, Lime
- 2 T Cilantro chopped
- In a skillet with oil, saute onion and tomato
- Combine rice, stock, tomato juice, onion, diced tomato, cilantro and lime juice in a small stock pot or rice cooker. Simmer, covered for 20 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is gone