coconut jasmine rice

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we love us some asian dishes around here..
this past month, i have been adapting all all of our go-to recipes for my better half’s whole30 challenge (which we have loved and highly recommend). i edited so many good ones from the blog and made the cinnamon bun muffins as a reward when he was halfway through. i even made this hearty baked potato soup whole30 approved! (check out the “whole30 friendly” category on the right side of the home page to check them all out.)
our favorites that we pretty much kept on repeat were these asian turkey meatballs and these chicken lettuce cups. now that the husband is about to cross the finish line on his challenge (which by the way he did wholeFORTY 😐 overachiever), i am excited to re-introduce a few things into our diet at home, including rice!

this recipe – IT’S AMAZING Y’ALL. it is not just your average side dish that comes to you in the chinese restaurant.. it’s super creamy and tons of flavor comes from the coconut milk. and i will tell you, i am not a huge fan of coconut itself, but cooking with coconut milk is totally different and i love the flavor of it. this is a super simple recipe and one that is sure to become a kitchen staple in your house too.

coconut jasmine rice
makes about 3 cups

ingredients

1 1/4 cups jasmine rice (uncooked)

1 14-oz can coconut milk (unsweetened; not “lite”), shake well before opening

3/4 cup water

a very generous pinch of coarse sea salt

directions

  1. in a medium sized saucepan, combine all ingredients. heat to boiling over moderate high heat. once boiling, reduce heat to low and cover. cook rice for 12-14 minutes until all water has been absorbed. fluff with a fork and serve along with your favorite asian main dish.

mexican rice with cilantro + garlic

if you have been to my house, you might have noticed i have a little problem with too many cookbooks. i will admit it, but i am far from getting into a program to help me quit.

every time i get a new cookbook, i will curl up with it that evening like i would a novel and look through it, reading the introduction, the contents, the entries, marking a few recipes that i want to make soon. i love to get a feel for the food inside of it, scanning the food styling and photographs, and letting my mouth water. so the last time i was at the bookstore, my eyes landed on tacolicious, this gorgeous cookbook by the chef at a popular san francisco eatery of the same name. the book is beautifully photographed and the design of it made me immediately pick it up. i only had to flip through it and see all of its mexican food loveliness and i was sold. or rather it was. to me. i have not had the cookbook very long, but i have already made a ton of recipes from it – and i highly recommend it. their rice recipe is my favorite so far – boldly seasoned and perfectly fluffy, after sautéing and then baking in the oven. comes out perfect every time. this makes quite a bit, so for a family night in, i would halve this recipe. but if you are hosting the neighborhood’s taco tuesday fiesta, you will have plenty.

baked mexican rice with cilantro + garlic
adapted from tacolicious by sara deseran

ingredients

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped

3 large cloves garlic, minced

1 16-oz bag long grain white rice (about 2 cups)

2 1/3 cups water

1 cup canned tomato puree

2 tsp dried cilantro (or oregano)

1 tsp cumin

1 bay leaf

2 tsp coarse sea salt

a few grinds of freshly cracked pepper

directions

1. preheat the oven to 350.

2. heat the oil in a large oven-safe pot, covered, over medium heat. add in the onion and saute for 3-4 minutes. add the garlic and cook another minute more, until onion is translucent. reduce heat to medium-low, then add the rice and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently until rice has browned.

3. add the water, tomato puree, cilantro (or oregano), cumin, bay leaf, salt, and pepper. stir to combine and cook, uncovered, for about 10 minutes on medium-low heat. cover, transfer pot to the oven, and bake for 40 minutes, until liquid has been absorbed and rice is tender.

4. remove from the oven and allow to cool, first with the cover on, then remove and let cool a bit more. fluff with a fork and serve warm.

rice and corn with cilantro & avocado

this side dish makes me so happy, i’d probably eat it for the main course.
it is light, refreshing, and the perfect thing to go with anything on the grill.
it’s ingredients lean southwestern and mexican, so it goes really well with chips & fresh salsa or a big cheesy plate of enchiladas. i even think it would strike the perfect balance with a burger or a steak.

rice and corn with cilantro & avocado and lemon dressing
8 side-dish servings

ingredients

1 cup long grain white rice

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)

4 tbsp olive oil, divided

1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels, thawed

1/2 green bell pepper, seeded & chopped (about 3/4 cup)

1/2 yellow bell pepper, seeded & chopped (about 3/4 cup)

1 jalapeño, seeded & chopped

1 cup yellow zucchini, chopped

1 avocado, diced

1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions (about 1 bunch)

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

directions

1. cook 1 cup rice according to package directions (about 12-15 min). meanwhile, whisk lemon juice and 3 tbsp olive oil in a small bowl. season dressing to taste with salt & pepper.

2. heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. add corn, green bell & yellow bell pepper, jalapeño, and zucchini. sprinkle with just a bit of salt & pepper. saute until veggies are just tender, about 6-7 minutes. place in a large bowl.

3. add rice, green onions, cilantro, and dressing; toss to coat and serve. top each serving with diced avocado*.

* this recipe makes a pretty big batch so we had leftovers at the end of the evening. because of this,  i add the avocados in with each serving. otherwise, the avocado will turn brown with the leftovers in the fridge.

enjoy!

recipe adapted via bon appetit