I know what you’re thinking: you don’t need a recipe for rice. It’s true that most of us could probably make rice with our eyes closed and one hand tied behind our backs (I suppose that would be a slight fire hazard in some states). Even so, sometimes, it’s the simple recipes that you need to anchor all of the difficult things that come out of our kitchens.
Rice is actually one of those things that everyone thinks they know how to cook because it’s rice, four little letters, one tiny grain, but in actuality, getting perfectly fluffy rice is a bit of an art. If you make rice frequently or often need a lot of it at once – like if you cook a batch of it for the week to go with various dinners – then you might be able to justify splurging on one more kitchen appliance that has one very provincial function. Before you commit to a life long dedication to all things Basmati, make rice on the stove…and make it so delicious that you’ll start making it every night.
Now, your inevitable online shopping spree is perfectly justified.
- 3 poblano peppers
- Canola oil or vegetable oil
- 1 small yellow or white onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 large jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely diced
- 2 tsp. ground cumin
- ½ cup fresh chopped cilantro, divided
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup long grain white rice
- 2 cups water
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place poblano peppers on a small baking sheet. Put in oven and roast, turn occasionally, until skin is deeply brown in spots. Remove from the oven and allow to cool enough to touch. Peel off the skin and don’t worry if not every speck comes off. Remove the seeds and roughly chop. Set aside. (Even though these peppers are mild tasting, they can sting your hands. Be sure to wash after handling).
- Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add just enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan, then add the onions along with a large pinch of salt. Saute until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and jalapeno, sauté for a minute, then sprinkle in the cumin. Cook until very fragrant then pour in the rice and half the cilantro. Stir very well, coating the grains of rice with the oil, vegetables, and cumin and allow to toast a bit, also allowing the cilantro to wilt, about 3 minutes in the pan. Pour in the water and give it another big pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then cover and turn the heat down to low. Cook for 15 minutes.
- Remove the cover and using a fork, carefully stir in the poblano peppers and the rest of the cilantro. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Turn off the heat and cover for another 5 minutes.