When it comes to making Latin cuisine at home, I normally cook Americanized dishes like nachos. However, at a restaurant, I eat more traditional dishes that involve a side of rice and beans. While the beans vary, sometimes they're refried pintos other times they're saucy black, the rice is almost always Spanish rice. It's orange and has a distinct tomatoey taste.
My friend Emily has been making her grandmother's Spanish rice for years and with Cinco de Mayo on the horizon, I begged her to finally share the recipe. The secret is the tomato sauce. It gives the rice a delicious al dente texture and rich comforting flavor. To get the easy technique to this humble side you'll enjoy over and over again, keep reading.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium white onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup rice
1/2 cup tomato sauce
2 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Cilantro sprigs, optional for garnish
- Heat the oil in a medium saucepan (that has a good-fitting lid), over medium-low heat.
- Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the rice and sauté until it's white and silky about 3 minutes.
- Add the broth, tomato sauce, and season generously with salt. Bring the mixture to a boil. Cook, boiling until the liquid has reduced by half.
- Turn the heat down to low, cover, and steam until all the liquid is gone about 15 minutes. Serve garnished with cilantro sprigs, if desired.
- Side Dishes, Rice