If you are anything like me, there is one question that can strike more dread into you than any other – “what’s for dinner?” Seriously, it feels like an eternal question, mainly because it’s what Dean and I ask each other every single day. And sometimes, I have a plan; I might decide that we’re going to braai or that I feel like cooking something in particular. But more often then not, it’s a question of how to throw together a decently healthy meal with minimal effort with whatever we have in the house. On those days, I really don’t want to spend more than half an hour in the kitchen dealing with food, but I still want us to eat something tasty and nutritious. So, here’s one of my new favorite inventions that really is easy to make, seems to appeal to most/all tastes and offers some pretty good nutrients without going over the top with the calories.
I’d call this a Spanish rice recipe, but it’s probably not authentic enough. Instead, this is my Chorizo rice recipe, and I hope it makes your life easier as a simple fall-back answer for “what’s for dinner”?
Chorizo rice recipe
- Chorizo (one full sausage/220 grams)
- large onion
- two peppers
First things first, chop up your chorizo. I like to make little half moons – they offer a large enough size to be noticeable in the food but still small enough to fry and crisp up nicely. DO NOT ADD ANY OIL TO THE PAN! Instead, put the pan on a medium heat and allow the fat from the chorizo to render down.
While your chorizo is rendering, chop the onion and peppers. I like a fairly rustic chop to these, but depending on your family you might prefer to chop these more finely. Once the chorizo has crisped up nicely in the pan and you have quite a bit of oil going, add in the onion and peppers along with a sprinkle of cumin (probably about a teaspoon or so).
At this point, you may want to boil your kettle. Once the veggies have softened slightly, slowly add in a cup of uncooked rice. I buy mine bulk from the nearest asian supermarket, but whatever your rice of choice is should work. DO NOT ADD SALT – the salt from the chorizo should be more than enough. You simply want to stir in the rice, coating it in the flavorful juices in the pan, helping it take on that golden color from the chorizo and peppers. Once the cup of rice is mixed into the pan, you can cover with boiling water and add your liquid stock, or use homemade stock if you have it.
Cover the pan and turn down the heat and allow to simmer for about 10 minutes, checking and stirring regularly. Taste the rice to see if it’s cooked through, and add a touch more water if needed.
And… that’s pretty much it. Once the rice is cooked, the food is ready. Chorizo rice can be served on its own, or with a salad. If you want to bump up the protein, you could add chicken thighs or a seafood of your choice. It’s all so simple, and yet so delicious. Plus, based on a rough estimate from a recipe calculator, it appears to be about 375 calories for a portion with some nice sources of B-Vitamins and other essential nutrients. Fair warning, there is quite a bit of sodium and fat, so if you’re watching your intake this might not be the best for you.
I hope you enjoy it! Please let me know how it turns out for you.