Monday, August 1, 2011

Salsa-Smothered Rice

Salsa is an absolute necessity in my fridge.  I could make a meal out of salsa and tortilla chips and some nights I have done just that.  There are a few store bought brands I reach for in a hurry, but nothing beats real homemade salsa.  I make lots of versions; some with avocado, black beans, or corn.  I've even made fruit salsas with pita chips.  It's great in the summertime with the availability of so many fresh tomato varieties.  You may start noticing I have a weakness for Mexican flavors and salsa falls under this category.  I'm surprised it took me this long to combine salsa with rice. When I make salsa, I always chop my ingredients by hand.  However, in my salsa-smothered rice, I use the food processor to get a finer chop, but also to get some liquid out of the ingredients.  

I wish there was a better story to go along with this dish; but this one was created one night in a moment of hunger, short on time, and low on groceries.  I began using up what was in my pantry and fridge.  The salsa ingredients hopped in my food processor along with some extra virgin olive oil streamed in.  I folded this mixture into the pot of white rice, and there you have it.  Salsa-smothered rice.  It's fresh tasting, great for summer, and couldn't be simpler.  Black beans on the side are great with this too.  Once you start combining your own ingredients and herbs into rice, you'll never look at a box of pilaf the same way again.  

~Salsa Smothered Rice Recipe~

1 cup rice
2 cups water
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes halved
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
1/3 cup loosely packed cilantro
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp cumin
juice of 1 lemon
juice of 1 lime
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to your liking

In a pot, bring water up to a boil.  Add rice and onion.  Reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes.  Let rice stand for 5 minutes before fluffing. 

In a food processor, combine tomatoes, red pepper, cilantro, coriander, cumin, lemon and lime juice.  Stream in extra virgin olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper.

Using a spatula, fold the salsa mixture into the rice to combine.  Serves 4 as a side.


Epicurea said...

what a fun and simple recipe, perfect for a lazy monday night!

Anonymous said...

Ohh, great post Stephanie. I'm just retreating home after my trip in California and I have a feeling I'm going to be craving salsa and mexican food for awhile... this looks great. Perfect for summer or just a quick meal. (But, by the way I've definitely made a meal out of chi and salsa.) Can't wait to try it out!

Stephanie said...

Thanks girls-if you wanted some heat in this, you could add a jalapeno too. I'm not a heat person, but some are. Just throwing that option out there too. Hope you had a fun time in California Amy!

kyleen said...

I've never really liked salsa, until I tried tried "homemade" salsa (homemade in the sense that we ate it at a restaurant where they made their own salsa). Guilty as charged on the boxed pilaf. This looks a lot tastier (: