Spanish rice has aways been my culinary Everest. One would think, being married to a Hispanic, I would have access to inside information. One would be wrong. First, because mother-in-laws don’t always easily relinquish such important information as family recipes to daughter-in-laws. Second, because my mother-in-law’s attempts at rice weren’t any better than mine.
I’ve been working on Spanish rice for longer than I’ve been married. Ten long years of sub par, and sometimes even inedible rice. But no longer. I now know the secret. Jarred salsa.
- 2 cups ordinary white rice
- 3 Tbsp canola oil
- 2 cups mild salsa (I used Native Texan Tex-Mex.)
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 4 cups water
Heat up the oil over medium in a 12″ frying pan. Throw in the rice, and toast that rice for about 15 minutes. You want the grains to start to brown. Stir it around occasionally so that it cooks evenly.
When the rice is toasted, throw in the salsa and chicken stock. Stir it up off the bottom, then leave it alone to simmer.
When all the liquid is, add two cups of water. Stir it up off the bottom again and leave it alone to simmer. When all the liquid is again, taste it. It probably isn’t done, but at this point you ought to check. Add the last two cups of water, stir it up off the bottom, and let it simmer. When the liquid is all absorbed, taste it. The rice should be done. Stir it for a few minutes on medium high to help let out the excess moisture, then remove it from the heat.
At this point, the rice will taste like the rice from a restaurant, but it will have a moister, stickier texture. If you want the drier texture of a restaurant’s spanish rice as well as the taste, refrigerate it. The next day, microwave the rice to reheat it and the texture will be perfect.