Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Baked Garlic Rice Pilaf

This month's theme for What's Baking is "Baking with Garlic".  My mind immediately went to garlic knots or garlic breadsticks or even a delicious garlic rosemary bread I found online.  But I wanted to think outside the box.  Plus, I eat enough bread as it is, did I really need that much extra bread in my house??  Of course my answer would still have been YES!! But, alas, I had nowhere to add it to my menu plan, plus I needed a side dish to my Shabbat chicken dinner.

Then I remembered a delicious rice pilaf I had made a few years back and realized I had never shared it here!  I don't remember how I first came across this exact recipe, but it is from my dear friend Jessica's blog.

Rice pilaf is rice cooked in stock (and not, as one contestant on Top Chef a few seasons ago thought, rice with 'a lot of stuff in it").  And this baked version uses some stock at the beginning and adds more partway through cooking.  I made a small adjustment to make this dish appropriate for a meat meal, then satisfied my own garlic craving by adding extra garlic.  The original recipe called for crushed garlic only, but just wait until you get the smooth deliciousness of a cooked garlic chunk.  It is like a little bite of heaven.  I had first made this back when coconut oil was becoming a thing so I used that as a parve substitute for butter and think that it really adds to the flavor of this dish.

I'm looking forward to seeing what everyone else made this month.  Garlic just might be my favorite ingredient to use!

Baked Garlic Rice Pilaf (slightly adapted from Sunny Side Up)

2 Tbsp coconut oil
3 garlic cloves, crushed
3 garlic cloves halved, quartered or roughly chopped
1 cup brown rice
2 1/2 cups chicken broth, divided  **use vegetable broth if you want to make this a parve dish

salt and pepper to taste

- Preheat oven to 375
- Melt the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the garlic and rice and cook for approx 3 minutes, or until the garlic starts to turn golden brown.
- Add 1 cup of broth, salt and pepper and bring to a boil.  Transfer the rice, garlic and broth to a casserole dish with a tight fitting lid or use two sheets of foil to seal a deep dish.
- Bake for 25 minutes.
- Remove the dish from the oven and stir in the rest of the broth (1 1/2 cups).
- Re-cover the dish and continue baking for 45 minutes.

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