This Mexican green rice recipe came about because I had an abundance of greens in the fridge and wanted a new and refreshing way of eating them. The greens I use (as well their quantity) change all the time depending on what I have in the fridge. I've eaten this flavourful rice with beans, omelettes, curries and plain yoghurt to name a few accompaniments. It always makes me feel as though I'm eating a Summer dish and bonus; that I'm not neglecting the greens I should be eating but sometimes prefer not to.
Mexican Green Rice (arroz verde)
300g of green leafy veggies (I use a bunch of carrot tops, silver beet and parsley)
1 bunch of coriander
2 spring onions or green garlic
2 cups of water
3 tbsp of grape seed or vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups of long grain rice
2 tsp of salt
In a blender, puree the greens, chilli, coriander, onions, half of the water and 1 tbsp of the oil.
On a medium flame, heat remaining oil in a heavy based fry pan (I use my heavy braiser pan with great results). Add the rice and lightly fry until it turns white, stir occasionally.
Add the salt, puree and remaining water. Bring it to a boil, stir and then cover. Reduce heat to very low and cook for exactly 15 minutes.
Remove from the heat and steam for 10 minutes more (do not open the lid!).
Fluff with a fork and serve as you desire.
Fish Curry (adapted from Rick Stein)
400g fish fillets such as flathead, gurnard or warehou
250g calamari or cuttle fish, cut into pieces and scored
10 raw prawns, peeled and deveined
1 tsp salt
freshly ground white pepper
1 tbsp lemon or lime juice
6 tbsp laksa paste
2 tbsp vegetable oil
4 kaffir lime leaves torn into small pieces
2 lemon grass stalks, halved and bruised
120ml of vegetable stock
250ml coconut milk
Cut the fish into 3-4cm uniform chunks. Put fish, prepared prawn tails and squid in a bowl and rub well with salt, pepper, lime juice and half of the laksa paste.
Heat the oil in a heavy based fry pan and fry gently for 2 minutes. Add the kaffir limes leaves, lemongrass, stock and simmer for 1 minute.
Add the fish (not the squid or prawns) and cook on one side of 1 minute. Turn and cook for a further minute. Add the coconut milk, squid and prawns, and simmer for 2 minutes.
Season with chill, coriander and more citrus juice.