Life Is Like A Pilaf

Sometimes life is like a pilaf — bits and pieces thrown together with savory results.  Take last Friday, for instance…

After working full time for the third week in a row (following a two year hiatus spent primarily on sedentary pursuits…), I was starting to feel frazzled.  Then the phone rang, twice.  Not one lunch offer, but TWO.  God is good.

I juggled my Day Planner (aka slightly crumpled Post-It note stuck to the front of my wallet so I “won’t forget”) and accommodated both requests — one lunch date for high noon and the other for next week.  (Having something to look forward to keeps me going.)  Then I settled back into work with a smile, happy with my pilaf-of-a-life.   My husband says I’m easily amused.  On a scale of 1 to 10, I’d have to agree — I generally rate a 9 when it comes to savoring thrown together affairs.

Here’s a pilaf we enjoyed this weekend…

Paisano Pilaf

2 T. butter

1 c. long grain white rice

2 c. water

1 t. Kosher salt

1 jar (6.7 oz.) grilled artichokes in oil

1/4 c. sun dried tomatoes in oil

1 roasted red pepper, jarred or previously roasted

1 T. capers (or to taste)

Preheat oven to 350.  On your stovetop, melt the butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat.  Add rice; stir 2 to 3 minutes, until it begins to give off a nutty aroma.  Add the water and salt; stir until mixture comes to boiling.  Cover with a lid; using pot holders, carefully transfer to oven.  Bake 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, roughly chop the artichokes, sun dried tomatoes and roasted red pepper.  (Need not thoroughly drain the artichokes or sun dried tomates; the residual oil adds to the flavor.)  Place this friendly-looking mess on a heat-proof plate on your stovetop to warm the veggies slightly as the rice bakes.

After 25 minutes, remove rice from oven and fluff it with a wooden spoon, making sure to “squeegee” any stubborn rice from the bottom and sides of the pan.  Let sit uncovered for 5 minutes to “dry,” then stir in the warmed, chopped veggies.  Serve with hot-off-the-grill steaks, kabobs, chops or salmon.  Or, try it alongside roast chicken, beef or pork loin.  Enjoy!

Recipe credit:  Oven-baked rice method adapted from Emeril’s “Real Deal Rice Pilaf.”  (I threw in the rest.)  Use whatever combo of add in’s tickles you!

Enjoying life at it’s pilaf finest,


3 thoughts on “Life Is Like A Pilaf

    • Hi, Mike! I’m actually eating a variation of this for dinner tonight — sauteed mushrooms, spring onions, a garlic clove or two, petite peas, homemade chicken stock… I love pilafs! Thanks again for the fun invitation to “cook” for the woman in the window. :) And if you folks at home are wondering what in the world I’m yakking about, click here:

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