March 21, 2012

Broccoli with Lemon and Saffron Scented Rice

My sweet sister-in-law Susan gave me The Northwest Vegetarian Cookbook for Christmas. It's got some great dishes to offer, including this one. The lemon is perfect for spring time - just enough pep to brighten up the table without going too crazy after a long winter. Brown rice takes longer than white rice to cook - about 35 minutes. But aside from that, this meal is a snap to put together. This method of cooking rice with a whole bunch of spices is wonderful. It adds so much flavor and makes the rice kind of creamy. It also eliminates the need for a sauce - one less thing to do, one less dish to clean. 

Serves 6.

  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 2 pinches saffron threads
  • Zest and juice of 2 small lemons
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey or agave
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 
  • Pinch of chili powder 
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil plus more for sauteing the broccoli 
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable Better than Bullion 
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • Freshly ground sea salt 
  • Red pepper flakes 
  • 4 cups fresh broccoli, 
  1. Put all ingredients minus the broccoli in a medium sized pot. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer until fully cooked - about 35 minutes (depends on your altitude). 
  2. In the meantime, cut up broccoli into bite-sized pieces. Drizzle olive oil into a hot fry pan and add broccoli. I usually add more olive oil - we love the stuff. Saute on high for a few minutes until bright green - it's ok if it gets a little browned in some places - makes it a little crunchy. Don't overcook your broccoli - you want it to be naturally crunchy not limp. It tastes better and is more nutritious this way. Season with garlic, salt and pepper as desired. 
  3. Fluff rice with a fork and place on serving platter to divide onto plates. Top with broccoli and serve. 
  4. Makes great leftovers. 

2 comments:

Kari Quaas said...

Yum. Where do you get your saffron?

Melissa Robertson said...

Mine is from the Canary Islands...not very convenient from here! There must be a good spice store around. I'll let you know if I find one. It's too expensive at a grocery store.