Easy Mexican (Spanish) Rice

I spent my Memorial day long weekend over at my sister-in-law’s house, over on the East side of WA, teaching her how to cook. As we were running through recipes she wanted to learn how to cook, she mentioned that she loved rice…in all it’s forms. Now that’s my kinda girl right there :-) ! I love rice too!! She wanted to learn how to make Spanish rice, you know, the tomato flavored rice they serve here in Mexican restaurants. Who doesn’t like that rice huh?

Anyway, so I taught her how to make my very simple version of Mexican/Spanish rice and she absolutely loved it and couldn’t believe how easy it was to make. Which made me wonder why I haven’t blogged this recipe yet. So here I am, sharing this super easy and absolutely delicious tomato rice recipe with you all here today.

Now, I used green bell peppers instead of a jalapeno pepper because my daughter can’t handle spice AT ALL. She thinks Crest toothpaste is spicy! I know!  I also used green onions for that splash of fresh green and as a garnish instead of cilantro, as my dear husband, like a lot of men I’ve noticed, has an aversion to that particular herb. I don’t understand what is about cilantro, but it’s one of those things people really love or absolutely hate it. I for one love it. So, if it weren’t for my picky family (who I love dearly anyway), I’d be making this dish with jalapeno’s and cilantro instead of the bell pepper and green onion. Here’s how you can make it…

Easy Mexican (Spanish) Rice

Ingredients:
2 tbsp Olive Oil
1 clove of garlic, minced
1/2 green bell pepper or 1 jalapeno, seeded and finely diced
2 green onions or a handful of cilantro, roughly chopped
1 1/2 cups of long grain rice (I use Basmati Rice)
1/2 cup Tomato sauce (or canned diced tomatoes if you want chunky tomato pieces in the rice)
3 Cups of chicken broth/stock
1 tsp salt (or according to taste if the chicken broth is salty)
1/3 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp dried oregano

Method:
– Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a deep pan, on medium-high heat.
– Add the minced garlic and sautee for a minute or two, until it’s soft.
– Toss in the diced green pepper/ jalapeno and sautee it together with the garlic.
– Before your garlic starts burning, add the rice and stir it well so that more or less each grain is coated in oil. Sautee the rice for a couple minutes stirring to make sure the rice doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
– Then add 1/2 cup of tomato sauce or diced tomatoes (according to your preference) and stir it all to coat the rice.
– Pour in the chicken stock/broth and stir picking up all the flavor from the bottom of the pan.
– Season the rice with salt, pepper and oregano. Stir gently and let the broth come to a boil on high heat.
– As soon as the liquid starts bubbling, put a lid on and turn the heat down to a low simmer and let the rice cook for about 20 mins, until most of the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. Add the chopped green onion or cilantro and very gently stir it in, or simple fluff the rice up with some forks.
– Garnish with a little green onion on top.

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