Healthy Mediterranean Cooking at Home

Category Archives: Rice

 

I find a dish of risotto to be enough for dinner, however, if you would like more add a green salad and some Italian bread.

2-3 servings

Ingredients

1/2 pound shrimp, with shells

Stock
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Shells from 1/2 pound of shrimp
4 cups water
1 teaspoon seafood seasoning

Risotto
4 cups shrimp stock
1/4 cup butter
¼ cup minced shallots
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 cup Arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine
Coarse salt and freshly ground white pepper
½ cup diced sun-drained tomatoes
½ cup heavy cream
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
Chopped parsley

Directions

Make the shrimp stock
Place the ingredients in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, turn the heat to a simmer and cook for 1- minute. Strain the stock and return the liquid to the pot. use the stock to make the risotto.
Bring the stock to a simmer in a medium saucepan; keep at a gentle simmer.

Heat a wide saucepan or deep skillet over medium heat. Add the butter, shallots, and garlic and cook until the shallots have softened about 2 minutes. Pour in the rice and cook, stirring pretty much constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes, so the rice can absorb the oil.
Pour in the wine and stir. Season with salt and white pepper and bring to a simmer. You want the liquid at a steady simmer. Stir often, scraping the bottom of the pan. When most of the wine has been absorbed – ladle in 1 cup of the shrimp stock. Keep at a simmer, stirring until the rice absorbs most of this liquid. Continue the process, adding stock by the cupful, until you’ve added 3 cups of stock.

Add the shrimp and tomatoes with the last cup of stock and simmer until the rice is al dente. Stir in the cream and cheese and heat until the mixture is hot. Spoon into serving bowls and sprinkle with chopped parsley.


 

Ingredients

2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Italian sausage or chorizo link, diced
2 teaspoons achiote paste or 1/2 teaspoon Sweet Spanish paprika,
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper and 1/2 teaspoon Aleppo pepper
11/2 cup seafood or vegetable broth
1/2 of a large onion, chopped
1/2 cup Spanish {Bomba{ or other shirt grain rice, soaked in water for 20 minutes and then drained
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 large pinch of Spanish saffron threads soaked in 1/4 cup of water
Salt
1 large Roma tomato, chopped
3 oz diced bell pepper
12 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
6 oz bay scallops
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Directions

In a large deep pan or cast iron skillet, heat the olive oil. Turn the heat to medium-high and add the sausage and chopped onions. Saute the mixture for 5 minutes then add the rice, and cook for 3 more minutes, stirring regularly.

Add the chopped garlic and broth r. Stir in the saffron and its soaking liquid, achiote paste or paprika, cayenne pepper, Aleppo pepper, and salt. Stir in the chopped tomatoes and bell peppers. Bring to a boil and let the liquid slightly reduce, then cover (with a lid or tightly with foil) and cook on low heat for 25 minutes.

Uncover and spread the shrimp over the rice, pushing it into the rice slightly. Add a little water if needed. Cover and cook for another 4-5 minutes. Add the scallops and recover, cook, or until the shrimp turns pink.
Garnish with parsley.

This is a complete meal, but you could add a salad and crusty bread if you wish.

 


SAUCE
1teaspoon wasabi powder
1 teaspoon water
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 garlic clove (crushed)
TUNA
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1⁄2teaspoon wasabi powder
2 fresh tuna fillets (5 oz eachand1 inch thick)

Directions

In a bowl mix wasabi and water to make a paste.
Let stand for 10 minutes.
Stir in vinegar, mayonnaise, and garlic.
Set aside.

Prepare a grill or preheat an air-fryer to 380 degrees F

In a cup, mix the soy sauce, oil, and wasabi powder.
Brush on the tuna fillets.

To Grill
Grill for 3-4 minutes on each side for rare tuna. Add 2 minutes more for medium.

To Air-Fry
Cook for 4 minutes[(for medium-rare tuna] then remove from the air fryer and let rest for about 5 minutes before slicing.

AHI TUNA STEAKS IN AIR FRYER TIMES
Rare: 3 minutes
Medium-Rare: 4 minutes
Medium: 4 ½ minutes
Well Done: 5 minutes

Place the fillets on the rice and top with the wasabi sauce.

Crispy Rice

Ingredients

2 cusp cooked rice
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sriracha
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
Peanut oil

Directions
Place the rice in a bowl and sprinkle with the vinegar using a rice paddle to fold the vinegar into the rice. Add the remaining seasonings. And mix gently.

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a medium skillet. When the oil is hot, add the rice and pan into a circle the size of the bottom of the skillet.
Fry the rice until crispy on the bottom. Turn the rice over with a spatula: hash brown style. Cook until brown. Divide in half and place on two individual dinner plates.


Italian Style Lamb chops

4 servings

4 Large Lamb Loin Chops
1/4 cup Olive Oil
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
2 teaspoons fresh mint, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
Zest of 1 Lemon
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper

Directions

Mix together all of the marinade ingredients and place in a shallow casserole dish along with the lamb ensuring the marinade coats the lamb well. Refrigerate for at least two hours or up till 6 hours. Remove from the refrigerator 45 minutes before you are ready to cook to allow the meat to come to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Heat a heavy oven-proof frying pan at medium-high heat. Sear the lamb very well on both sides until golden brown. Place the pan in the hot oven until the lamb is cooked, about 6 to 8 minutes.

Wild and whole Grain Rice

4 servings

Ingredients

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 medium onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/4 cup whole grain wild rice {I use Lundberg}
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
4 oz can sliced ounces mushrooms
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

Heat the butter in a large saucepot over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the rice and toast while stirring until it begins to smell nutty, about 1 minute. Add the garlic and chicken stock and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook on low until the water is absorbed about 40 minutes.
Add the mushrooms and seasonings. Keep the pot on the burner with the heat off, cover the pot, and let sit for 5 minutes.

Spinach With Garlic

4 servings

Ingredients

2- 15z pkg frozen spinach, defrosted and drained
2 garlic cloves
¼ cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Heat the oil and garlic in a large, deep skillet over low heat. Add the spinach, salt, and pepper. Cover the skillet. Heat the spinach until hot, turning the mixture several times.



2 servings

Ingredients

For the lamb: marinade
4 small loin lamb chops {grass-fed}
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
’Salt and pepper to taste
Combine the ingredients in a plastic zip; lock the bag and add the lamb. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight.

For the mustard sauce:
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
½ cup chicken or beef stock
1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
1 tablespoon instant flour {Wondra}
1 tablespoon heavy cream
1 tablespoon butter
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Heat all the ingredients in a small saucepan over low heat until thickened. Keep warm.

Cooking the lamb
Preheat an outdoor grill or a stovetop grill or an air fryer; Drain the lamb and grill for 6 minutes on one side and 6-7 minutes more on the second side, Place the lamb on a serving dish and spoon the mustard sauce over the lamb.

Honey-Ginger Oven Roasted Carrots

For 2 servings
Ingredients
4 large organics carrots (cut into 2-inch lengths
2 tablespoon oil
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon dried ginger
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. with a cover
Pour the oil into a small baking dish. Add the carrots and drizzle with the honey. Sprinkle the ginger, salt and pepper over the carrots. Mix everything well. Cover the dish.
Bake for 30 minutes until just tender.

Italian Style Rice

Ingredients

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 green onion minced
1 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup long-grain rice
1 cup chicken stock
1 /2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup parsley, chopped
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Directions

Sauté green onion on a medium saucepan with 1 tablespoon of oil until soft. Add garlic and rice. Sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add the broth and bring the mixture to a boil.
Lower the heat to low and cover the pan. Cook 15 minutes. Add the peas and parsley. Cover the pan and cook 5 minutes more. Stir in the cheese snd serves with the fish.


Italian Style Sea Bass

Ingredients

12 oz Chilean sea bass, cut into 2 portions
1 fresh lemon squeezed
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 minced garlic clove
2 pats butter
Salt, pepper to taste
1 tablespoon each fresh parsley, basil, minced
1/4 cup or more of Italian flavored bread crumbs

Directions

Oil a baking pan large enough to hold the fish.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F
Lay the Sea Bass skin side down in the pan.
Whisk the lemon juice with the dill, salt, pepper, parsley, basil, and garlic together.
Drizzle over each piece of fish, reserving some for the top.
Top each fillet with Italian bread crumbs and a pat of butter…
Bake in a preheated oven for around 20 minutes.

Baked Tomato Slices

Ingredients

1 large beefsteak tomato
2 ¼ inch thick slices of fresh mozzarella cheese
Several fresh basil leaves
Olive oil

Directions

Cut the tomato in half horizontally. Place them I cut the dude up in a small baking dish.
Top with mozzarella and basil. Drizzle with oil.
Place in the oven for the last 5 minutes of the fish’s baking time.

Italian Style Rice And Peas

Ingredients

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 green onion minced
1 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup long-grain rice
1 cup chicken stock
1 /2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup parsley, chopped
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Directions

Sauté green onion on a medium saucepan with 1 tablespoon of oil until soft. Add garlic and rice. Sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add the broth and bring the mixture to a boil.
Lower the heat to low and cover the pan. Cook 15 minutes. Add the peas and parsley. Cover the pan and cook 5 minutes more. Stir in the cheese snd serves with the fish.


Farro

One of the seven original grains cited in the Bible, farro was popular for hundreds of years until modern baking techniques left it behind.  Americans are finding it again and realizing that this savory and tasty grain has many modern uses. Italians not only like to use it in bread but also in cakes, pizza, and soups. Related to wheat but very different, this grain is friendly to the body, a great source of fiber, and naturally contains high levels of nutrients, vitamins, and protein.

Farro with Artichokes

Makes 6 servings, about 1 cup each

In this dish, farro stands in for rice in a risotto-like dish, full of tomatoes, artichokes, and fresh basil.

1 1/2 cups farro, rinsed
1 sprig of fresh sage
1 sprig of fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
1-15-ounce can no sodium added, diced tomatoes drained well
1 9-ounce box frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Pinch of crushed red pepper
1 1/2-2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, vegetable broth, or water
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese, divided
1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest

Directions

1. Place farro in a large saucepan and cover with about 2 inches of water. Add sage and rosemary. Bring to a boil; reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the farro is tender but still firm to the bite, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove the herbs and drain.
2. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until soft and beginning to brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the farro, tomatoes, artichokes, basil, salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper.
3. Add 1/2 cup broth (or water), bring to a boil over medium heat, and cook, stirring, until most of the broth is absorbed. Repeat with the remaining broth (or water), adding it in 1/2-cup increments and stirring until it’s absorbed and the farro is creamy but still has a bit of bite, about 10 minutes total. Stir in 1/4 cup cheese and lemon zest. Serve sprinkled with the remaining 1/4 cup cheese.

 Italy‘s Other National Dish-Polenta                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Polenta, a coarsely or finely ground yellow or white cornmeal, has been called by some the “Italian grits” and there are similarities to the hominy grits that are so popular in the southern United States. The key to the popularity of Polenta is its versatility. It can be served with nearly anything and that is why it has spread to every corner of Italy, where Italians always make use of what is locally grown or raised. Soft polenta is often a replacement for bread during a meal, or instead of the pasta course, served with butter and cheese and possibly shaved truffles. Polenta can also be served as a side dish to regional meat dishes such as Osso Bucco, chicken, and fish. Polenta in cake form can be layered with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and baked.

Italian Style Braised Pork Chops With Polenta

  • 4 boneless loin pork chops (about 1 inch thick) and trimmed of all fat
  • 1/4 cup of flour
  • 1 onion, sliced thin
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup of sliced white mushrooms
  • 1-15 oz. can of diced tomatoes ( no salt added)
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Sprinkle chops with salt and pepper. Dredge chops in flour.

 Heat oil in a large skillet with a cover. Brown chops on both sides. Add onions, sweet peppers, garlic, and mushrooms and cook for 10 minutes. Add tomatoes and oregano and cover and let simmer for about an hour until tender.

POLENTA

  • 6 cups of water
  • 2 cups of instant polenta
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • Salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Directions
Bring water to a boil and slowly add Polenta. Cook Polenta while whisking constantly for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add oil, cheese, salt, and pepper. Transfer Polenta to a lightly oiled 9×13-inch dish, smoothing until flat. Chill in refrigerator 30 minutes or until firm. Cut into 3 “ squares, brush with olive oil and grill, pan-fry, or broil until golden brown on the outside and heated through. Place pork chops and sauce over Polenta squares.

Extra squares of Polenta can be frozen for future meals.

Polenta Squares


Salmon Cakes

2 servings

Ingredients

1o oz salmon, wild-caught, skinned
1 teaspoon garlic
1 teaspoon grated ginger
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon soy sauce
¼ cup finely chopped bell pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped onion
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
¼ cup plain panko breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon peanut oil

Directions

Coarsely chop salmon and place half in a food processor. Add all the remaining ingredients except the panko and oil. Pulse until the mixture is combined but still chunky. R Transfer the salmon mixture to a medium bowl. Add breadcrumbs and stir until combined. Form the salmon into 4 mini patties, about 3 inches wide each, and place on a plate. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes

Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the salmon cakes and cook, turning once, until well browned and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a clean plate with the cooked greens.

Asian Style Sauteed Greens

4 servings
Ingredients
1 strip of bacon
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons onion, chopped
1 large garlic clove, minced
2 pounds kale or collard greens, stems removed, leaves chopped
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon honey
Chili pepper flakes, a pinch

Directions

Cook onions and garlic:
Use a large skillet with a tight-fitting cover. Melt bacon fat and heat olive oil on medium heat.

Sauté onion until transparent, a couple of minutes.

Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Cook the greens
Mix in the greens, sesame oil, chili pepper flakes, salt, and sugar. Cover and cook until tender, 8-15 minutes. (Note that young collard greens will cook up relatively quickly. Older greens may take upwards of 45 minutes to tenderize.)

Vegetable Fried Rice

Serves 3-4

Ingredients

1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons peanut oil
1/2 onion, chopped1
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 cup diced raw or cooked vegetables
2 cups cold leftover cooked rice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
2 green onions, sliced

Fried rice veggie ideas:
Sliced, diced or shredded, raw or cooked celery, green or red pepper, mushrooms, carrots, bean sprouts, broccoli, zucchini, green beans, peas or snow peas, cabbage (regular or Chinese)

Directions

In a wok or a large skillet, heat sesame oil over high heat. Add egg and cook, stirring, until the egg is scrambled. Remove scrambled egg to a plate.

Pour peanut oil into the wok. When it is very hot, add chopped onion and garlic and cook, stirring, for 2 or 3 minutes or just until onion is softened. Add raw vegetables first, followed by cooked vegetables (the first ones into the pan should be the veggies that take longest to cook, like raw carrots). Already-cooked veggies should be added last.

Finally, add rice, stirring constantly to break up the lumps of rice, mix it with the other ingredients, and heat thoroughly. Add soy sauce and oyster sauce and cook, stirring and tossing, for 2 or 3 minutes. Stir in scrambled eggs and green onions and stir-fry for one more minute. Remove from heat and serve immediately.


Greek-Style Stuffed Collard Greens

Young collard greens remind me of grape leaves. Serve with grilled lamb chops.

Ingredients

Lemon Yogurt Sauce:
1 cup Greek yogurt
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, plus a sprig for garnish
1 teaspoon ground coriander
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil, for drizzling

For the lemon yogurt sauce: Combine the yogurt, lemon juice, dill, coriander and a pinch of salt and pepper to a bowl. Mix together, then drizzle some olive oil on top and garnish with a sprig of dill.

Collards:

12 medium collard leaves (from 1 to 2 bunches), bottom stems removed
1 ½ cup s cooked basmati or long-grain white rice
¼ cup olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
Salt to taste
4 tablespoons pine nuts
3 garlic cloves, minced
⅓ cup chopped fresh dill
⅓ cup finely chopped mint
½ cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
Freshly ground pepper to taste
½ cup strained freshly squeezed lemon juice
Lemon zest from one lemon

Directions

Bring a large pot of water to a boil while you carefully stem the collard greens, trying to keep the leaves intact. Fill a bowl with ice water. When the water comes to a boil, salt generously and add the collard leaves, in batches. Blanch for 2 minutes and transfer to the ice water. Drain. Layout the leaves one at a time on a paper towel to blot, and use a sharp knife to cut out the thick center stems, cutting about three-quarters of the way to the top and making sure to leave 2 to 3 inches uncut at the top. Set the trimmed leaves aside.

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 6 minutes. Add the rice and pine nuts. Cook, stirring, until the rice is well coated about 1 minute. Add 3/4 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of pepper and remove from the heat. Stir in the dill, parsley, mint, and lemon zest.

Layout one collard leaf with the trimmed stem end pointing away. Spoon 2 level tablespoons of the rice filling in the center of the leaf. Fold the sides of the leaf over the filling, then roll the leaf up tightly away from you like a burrito, starting from the bottom and finishing seam-side down. Repeat with the remaining leaves and rice filling.

Add a splash of the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil to a deep, wide skillet. Arrange the collard rolls in a single layer on the bottom of the pan. Top with enough water to just cover the rolls, then drizzle in the remaining olive oil and the lemon juice.

Cover the rolls with a luncheon plate. Bring the liquid to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce to a low simmer and cook, covered with a lid, for 11/2 to 2 hours. Add more water if the liquid evaporates.

Serve with the lemon yogurt sauce.

 


There are many versions of this recipe in Italian cuisine. Some call for the addition of peas or meat. I like to keep them simple and I like to use leftover risotto instead of plain rice because risotto has more flavor, especially the Lemon flavored Risotto I shared with you last week.

This recipe makes 10 rice balls

Ingredients

Tomato Sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves minced
¼ cup finely chopped onion
1 tablespoon chili tomato paste
1 teaspoon anchovy paste
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
14 oz box or can of finely chopped Italian tomatoes

For the Arancini {Rice Balls}
4 cups leftover risotto or cooked white rice
¼ cup finely chopped parsley
2 eggs
10 ½-inch pieces of mozzarella cheese
⅓ cup flour
½ cup Italian seasoned panko crumbs
Vegetable oil for frying

Directions

For the tomato sauce

Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan and simmer for 30 minutes.

For the arancini

Beat one egg in a mixing bowl. Add the chopped parsley and risotto. Mix well.


Using a ¼ cup muffin scoop form 10 rice balls and place them on a waxed paper-covered plate. Push a piece of mozzarella into each rice ball and with floured hands form them into smooth balls. Beat the second egg with a few tablespoons of water in a deep bowl, In a second deep bowl place the flour, and in a third deep bowl place the panko crumbs.


Roll one rice ball in flour, then in the egg, and then in the panko crumbs. Return the ball to the paper-lined plate. Repeat the process with all the rice balls. Refrigerate for several hours.

 

In a deep dutch Oven heat several inches of oil to 350 degrees F. Fry the ball in the oil until they are brown on all sides. Drain on paper towels.

To serve
Place several tablespoons of tomato sauce on a serving plate. Place 2 or 3 arancini on top of the sauce and serve.



%d bloggers like this: