|Christmas Rice is loaded with flavor from red and green bell pepper, Parmesan, and pine nuts.|
I want to share one more recipe before I take most of next week off the enjoy the holidays with my family, and if you're making any kind of formal dinner this week, I recommend this Christmas Rice with Bell Peppers, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts as the perfect holiday side dish. The rice is loaded with flavor from red and green peppers, thinly sliced green onions, Parmesan, pine nuts, and just the right seasonings. It cooks in the oven (along with your main dish if you'd like) and doesn't require much watching. And of course it's red and green, which is always fun for this time of year. And before I talk more about the recipe, let me wish all my readers and friends a great holiday season, plenty of time with those you love, and lots of delicious food in 2013!
I made this with chicken stock, but if you skip the Parmesan and use vegetable stock this could be a delicious vegan dish as well. I'm also thinking that if you use a bit less stock this rice could be cooked in a slow cooker, although I haven't tried that yet. (Maybe read the recipe for CrockPot Rice with Dried Mushrooms, Herbs, and Parmesan if you want to try it, and I'd love to hear how it works if anyone does make it in the slow cooker.) I don't know if people are thinking about Meatless Monday this time of year, but this would be a great veggie-friendly option no matter what you serve it with. (You can find more meatless recipes by using the label Meatless Monday or checking Vegetarian Recipes in the recipe index, and I'm also doing a meatless slow cooker recipe each Monday on Slow Cooker from Scratch. For more Meatless Monday ideas from other bloggers check Meatless Monday at BlogHer, where I write a weekly post spotlighting one of the fabulous meatless recipe ideas I find around the web or visit my Meatless Monday Pinterest board.)
Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat, then add the rice and saute until it starts to brown. Then add the Spike Seasoning (or other all-purpose seasoning of your choice), dried oregano, and dried parsley and about 1 minute more.
Put the chopped vegetables and sauteed rice in a glass or crockery casserole dish that you've sprayed with non-stick spray and season to taste with salt and fresh-ground black pepper.
Cook rice covered at 350F/180C for 50-60 minutes, or until all the liquid is absorbed. (This will depend partly on the dish you use; I would check after 50 minutes.)
Toast pine nuts in a dry pan until they barely start to brown. Put the rice in serving dish, sprinkle pine nuts over, and serve hot.
(Makes 6-8 servings; recipe adapted from Red and Green Rice in American Profile Magazine.)
1 green bell pepper, finely diced
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
3/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
2 T extra-virgin olive oil (use an olive oil with good flavor)
1 1/4 cup Uncle Ben's Converted Rice
1 tsp. Spike Seasoning (or other all-purpose seasoning of your choice)
1/2 tsp. dried Greek oregano
2 tsp. dried parsley
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
2 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
3 T freshly grated Parmesan cheese
3 T pine nuts, toasted in dry pan
Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Spray a glass or crockery casserole dish with non-stick spray. (I used my favorite Anchor Hocking 12 Cup Bake-and-Store Glass Casserole Dish, but most any medium-sized dish will work.) While the oven heats, finely chop the green bell pepper and red bell pepper, and thinly slice the green onions.
Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat; then add the rice and saute until lightly browned, about 3-4 minutes. Add the Spike Seasoning, oregano, and dried parsley and saute 1 minute more. Put the rice and chopped peppers and green onion in the casserole dish, season with salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste, and stir to combine. Deglaze the frying pan with the chicken stock and add the stock to the casserole dish and stir again.
Cook the rice (covered with a lid or foil) about 50-60 minutes, or until rice is done and all the liquid is absorbed. (Cooking time will vary depending on the dish, so I would start to check after 50 minutes.) Remove from oven and let the rice stand for 10 minutes covered, then uncover and stir in the freshly grated Parmesan. Toast the pine nuts over low heat in a dry pan for about 2-3 minutes, or until they barely start to brown. (Watch them carefully; they can go from browned to burned pretty quickly.) Put the rice in a serving dish, sprinkle with pine nuts, and serve.
South Beach Suggestions:
I use Uncle Ben's Converted Rice for this recipe because it's a low-glycemic type of white rice that's suitable for the South Beach Diet. Made with this (or other low-glycemic rice choices) this rice would be a good side dish choice for phase 2 or 3 of the diet.
I chose the South Beach Diet to manage my weight partly so I wouldn't have to count calories, carbs, points, or fat grams, but if you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you.
Ten More Tasty Meatless Rice Ideas You Might Like:
(Recipes from other blogs not always South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)
Cumin Rice ~ Journey Kitchen
Baked Salsa Rice with Green Chiles, Lime, and Cilantro ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Cheesy Tex-Mex Rice ~ The Kitchn
Creole-Spiced Rice and Kale ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Spanish Rice ~ Simply Recipes
Easy Recipe for Pesto Lemon Rice ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Green Rice with Smoked Paprika ~ 101 Cookbooks
Black Bean, Rice, and Cilantro Salad ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Coconut Rice with Black Beans, Plantains, and Mango Salsa ~ Herbivoracious
Mujadarra - Middle Eastern Lentils and Rice with Caramelized Onions ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
(Want even more recipes? I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.)