Friday, October 22, 2010

FOOD FRIDAY!

PILAF

I don't have anything really new in the way of food, at least to me, to tell you about, but I did have this recipe, and the photo, in the files, waiting to be shared.  Glad to have the chance today.

Despite its Middle-Eastern origins, it seems that "pilaf," at least in today's American cooking vernacular, is just about whatever the cook wants it to be.  This is a version given to me 20-or-so years ago by a friend who lives in Baltimore, and it's come in handy over the years.  It's a very simple yet delicious side dish that harmonizes well with more showcase entrées.  As with all things that appear to be simple, the key to success is in the technique. 

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 medium shallots, minced
2 cups rice
1 cup raisins, light or dark
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 teaspoon salt
Pepper to taste
1 cup cashew pieces (salted is OK)

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Heat oil in a Dutch oven.  Add shallots and sauté until soft.  Add rice and cook, stirring, until rice is thoroughly coated with the flavored oil and just begins to color.  Add raisins and stir to mix, then add broth, salt and pepper.  Bring to a simmer, cover tightly, and place in oven to bake for 1 hour.

Meanwhile, pan-roast cashews in a dry pan over high heat until they take on a good deep brown, taking care that they don't burn.  As soon as the desired color is reached, remove pan from heat, place cashews in a bowl and set aside.

Remove rice from oven and let rest, covered, for 5 minutes.  Remove cover, sprinkle cashews over evenly.  Fluff rice, distributing cashews throughout.  Adjust seasoning and serve.

5 comments:

Kat said...

Ralph,
I have my own recipe which I like but I'm going to give this one a try. It sounds delicious.

Peggy said...

So glad to see Food Friday back. The pilaf looks delicious!

Ralph said...

Kat, glad you're intrigued. I look forward to hearing what you thinkof it.

Ralph said...

No promises, at least for the near-term, Peggy. But then you never know what may come up!

Zoey and Me said...

Easy recipe. Gotta try it. Thanks!