Rice, like pasta is one of my fave pantry staple items. Cheap. cheerful and super versatile.
Char’s Tex-Mex Rice Salad
Simple, delicious, doable, nutritious and one of my youngest son’s fave dishes. Hope you enjoy it as much as he does!
zest and juice of 2 limes
2 tsp (10 mL) minced fresh garlic *or to taste
1 tsp (5 mL) each; cumin, ground coriander and chili powder
1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
hefty pinch chili flakes
Whisk together all ingredients. Set aside.
½ cup basmati rice
1 can (540 mL) black beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup (125 mL) frozen corn, thawed
2 cups (500 mL) halved grape tomatoes
2 ripe avocados, diced
½ cup (125 mL) each: chopped fresh cilantro and green onions
¼ cup (60 mL) chopped fresh mint
Cook rice according to package directions. Cool. Toss rice with remaining ingredients and dressing. Makes about 6 cups (1.5 L).
Char’s Creamy Spiced Rice Pudding
There is nothing more comforting than warm rice pudding – it’s like a giant hug in rice form. For a creamier texture I like to use arborio rice – as I always have it on hand for risotto anyhow.
1 tbsp (15 mL) butter
½ cup arborio rice
1 ½ cups (375 mL) milk
1 cup (250 mL) 35% cream
⅓ cup (75 mL) Muskoka maple syrup
1 vanilla bean, sliced in half
1 cinnamon stick *or 1 tsp (5 mL) ground cinnamon
½ tsp (2 mL) each; ground ginger and ground cardamom
¼ tsp (1 mL) each; ground nutmeg, ground cloves and salt
½ cup (125 mL) roughly chopped walnuts
¼ cup (60 mL) dried cherries or dried fruit of choice: raisins, dried blueberries or dried cranberries
Additional cinnamon stick and maple syrup
more flavour add-ins: add 1/2 tsp (2 ml) orange zest and/or toasted coconut – YUM!!
Place all ingredients (except for garnishes) in a medium sauce pot and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Turn heat down and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Stir in walnuts and dried fruit (*if using). Garnish with cinnamon sticks and additional maple syrup.
Be sure and use hashtag #InCharsKitchen ~ if recreating and posting my recipes!! I’d love to follow along and see what you’re cooking.
Charmaine is the host of “In Char’s Kitchen” on YourTV Muskoka and regular guest on: Rogers IN Studio, Rogers Daytime Ottawa, CTV Morning Live Ottawa, CHCH Morning Live and Breakfast Television sharing her love and enthusiasm for all things food, cooking and fitness.
Most importantly; Charmaine is the mother of two active boys; Tyler & Colgan.
Charmaine understands the importance of preparing healthy, wholesome dishes all while keeping budget and time in mind.
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