California Rice with Roasted Plantains
By Julie Cader
Arroz de Pajarito or Rice with Ripe Plantain, uses the versatile plantain, a fruit similar to a banana, yet starchier and often used in Latin American cuisine. The combination of roasted plantains, along with other yummy ingredients, makes an excellent side dish accompanying all sorts of main dishes. Serves 6-8.
2 plantains, unpeeled
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
1 cup California Koshihikari Short Grain Rice
1 ½ cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 scallions, chopped
2 strips bacon, cooked and chopped
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
¼ cup pistachios, chopped
cilantro, for garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut plantains in half lengthwise. Combine melted butter, brown sugar and pepper and brush evenly over cut sides of plantain sections. Wrap each plantain tightly in aluminum foil and place them on a baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes. Carefully unwrap plantains, remove the peel, and slice into cubes.
Combine the rice and chicken stock in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Once stock is boiling, turn heat to low and cook covered for about 15 minutes, or until the water is completely absorbed.
While rice is cooking, heat olive oil in a medium saucepan, add pepper, garlic and scallions, and cook until onion is tender. Add in cooked bacon pieces, lime juice, pistachios and plantain cubes and stir well to blend.
Gently stir mixture into cooked rice, remove saucepan from the stove and let sit, covered, for 5 minutes. Fluff the rice mixture using a fork, spoon rice into serving bowl, sprinkle with chopped cilantro and serve while hot.
Julie is the former Finance & Administration Manager for the California Rice Commission, and a big proponent of trying new recipes- especially if they feature California rice.