Saturday, March 31, 2012
Pilaf with Carrot, Dill, and Orange Zest
Mr. Rosemary is and always will be my biggest fan and best critic. He is the litmus test for everything I make. He tolerates well my constant experimentation and insistence that we need a varied repertoire of food, that we need to try new things, instead of only his perennial favorites.
Which brings us to rice.
Although rice is a staple in three quarters of the world, it is not a favorite in this household. While he could eat noodles or pasta all day long, rice just doesn't have the same appeal. I have tried introducing orzo ("Looks like rice, but it isn't. This is just wrong," says he.) to a very lukewarm response.
Mixing rice with spinach was much better received. We will not even discuss brown rice.
So you could have floored me when I served this rice dish to his rave reviews. He commented on it before even mentioning the teriyaki pork tenderloin, which he adores, and the roasted asparagus (ditto).
It's fresh and easy and a close-to-perfect spring side to serve alongside your Easter ham. (Or lamb, if I had my druthers.) I do suggest doubling it. The two of us easily ate this amount!
I originally got this recipe from the 20-something son of a friend over 25 years ago, before I was more careful about acknowledging sources. I apologize to the creator.
Pilaf with Carrot, Dill and Orange Zest
makes four servings
2 tablespoons butter or extra virgin olive oil
2 medium carrots, shredded (about 1 cup)
1 cup long grain white rice
grated zest of one orange
1 bunch fresh dill leaves, washed and chopped (1/2 cup chopped)
1 3/4 cup hot chicken or vegetable broth
Melt butter or heat oil over medium heat in a heavy saucepan. (I like to use half butter. half olive oil.)Add carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, about five minutes. Add rice and cook, stirring, 2 or 3 minutes more. Stir in orange zest, then dill, then broth. When boiling well, cover and reduce heat to very low and cook 20 minutes. Turn off heat and let sit for 10 minutes before serving.