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Restaurant Style Mexican Rice

 

My daughter’s friend was over for dinner one night, and I served Mexican food. The little girl ate a spoonful of rice and said, “A couple questions. First, can you give my mom this recipe? Second, can we have this for breakfast tomorrow?” My daughter Katelyn looked at her and said, “I know, right?” Yeah, it’s that good.

Previously, I made Mexican rice by cooking the rice, and souping it up with a nice amount (but not too much) of tomato sauce. I think “Spanish rice” is something many 70’s and 80’s moms made, baked with ground beef and green bell peppers (Who knew back then there were bell peppers other than green? Not this kid.) Spanish rice was really like an inside-out stuffed bell pepper. While tasty, I wanted more of a side dish – – something light, but full of flavor. There are very few Mexican restaurants capable of meeting my perfect Mexican rice standards. Little flecks of minced translucent onions, light tomato flavor, and a texture that’s difficult to describe. Since dining out is more of a financial commitment more than ever, I like to re-create our favorite dishes at home without the price. I declare victory on this one.

As if being delicious and special wasn’t enough for this recipe, it’s also quick and easy to prepare, although it does bake an hour. Just grease a 9×13, and pre-heat the oven to 350. Add to casserole:

2 1/2 cups of uncooked white rice
4 3/4 chicken stock
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1 large clove of garlic, minced
1/4 cup minced onion
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt

Stir.

 

Cover tightly with foil. Bake an hour. When you pull from the oven, the onions and some sauce might have floated to the top like this:

 

 

 

Fluff the whole thing with a fork to incorporate.

 

I might take Katelyn’s friend up on her suggestion to have some this morning. Breakfast burrito anyone?

 

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