Some vegetables just taste like summer — red onions, fresh tomatoes, zucchini, radishes — especially if they’re raw or barely cooked. Even so, it can be hard to eat enough of them. There’s just something about a whole zucchini, or even a radish, that makes it seem like too much to deal with. (Here, let me just say how great cherry and grape tomatoes are for giving us the option to eat a tiny bit of tomato if that’s all we want.) Yes, you can make salads out of all kinds of raw vegetables, but anyone gets tired of salad after awhile.
In this dish, the vegetables are just barely cooked when they’re mixed with hot rice, enough to wilt and soften them a little without doing away with their fresh taste and texture. You can top it with cheese, or make a complete meal by adding some already cooked protein — canned garbanzos, for example, or shredded leftover chicken, though you may want to reheat that briefly first. Adding grated vegetables to Quick Lentils and Rice will also give you a meal in one dish.
Though I didn’t try it this time, grated fennel would probably be good in this dish, blending well with the tomatoes. Of course, you could just throw in some fennel seeds — or basil or oregano, or any other spice you like.
Up next: Gravenstein’s monster attacks, or the summer the apple tree went overboard.
- 1 cup uncooked white rice
- 1 tsp. butter
- 2 cups vegetable stock (or any clear soup, your choice)
- 1 carrot
- 1 zucchini
- 1 small red onion
- 1 medium radish
- About ½ cup cherry tomatoes, or one small regular tomato
- Shredded cheese (optional)
- Heat the stock to boiling point (use a bigger pot than you normally would, you’re going to be adding a lot to it).
- Carefully pour in the rice and reduce heat to low.
- Let the rice cook 20 minutes, or until it’s tender enough to eat and has absorbed all the stock.
- Meanwhile, peel and grate the carrot, and grate the zucchini and radish.
- Mince the onion.
- If you’re using cherry tomatoes, cut them into quarters, if a regular tomato, cut it into pieces about that size.
- When the rice is done, add the butter, let it melt, and stir it in.
- Add all the vegetables and stir in gently.
- Cover and let stand for 5-7 minutes. Vegetables will wilt slightly.
- Top with shredded cheese if you like.