You know how I love to give you all a story, well this rice delight has a beautiful origin; one that I have to share… The Community Centre was perched on a tiny block of land on the mountainside, in a little village on the Northern Range called El Luengo.
But, small as it may seem, big things happened in the little kitchen. The kitchen was a training ground of sorts for me. There I learnt the finer points of cooking from my mentor and duly expanded my appreciation for other cuisines around the world.
Imagine being exposed to using lemongrass in cooking other than for medicine or using new or gourmet ingredients or taking the same old same old ingredients and coming up with exciting twists to traditional dishes. I found myself shopping in our local specialty gourmet food stores and expanding my horizons to our Syrian/ Lebanese cooking culture. Man I even went as far as to buying some really expensive cook books. I was like a sponge those days… Well I’m still a sponge lol!! Can’t get away from that. 🙂
The class was small and cozy with about 10 to 15 of us; and we all chipped in for the ingredients to cook the dishes …. Some of the very dishes I have mastered now and posted here for all to learn. Recipes like Risi Bisi, Parsley Potatoes, and sweet potato salad were all a direct influence from that cooking experience.
Those evenings were worth it and ignited my passion for cooking ten fold…Let me explain…Let’s say my passion for cooking was like a lit candle…..After the course, my passion for cooking was like a raging forest fire; burning, consuming, spreading. I wanted to learn everything there is to learn about cooking, more so our very own trini cooking. I was obssessed …Ah have ah Trini Cooking Jumbie * on meh lol hahahaha….Ah like dat one; ah trini cooking jumbie.
Anyhow, all jumbie aside lol, rice delight is another of the whole lot of recipes I learnt, that I found to be refreshingly creative and a rice recipe worthy of posting for you all to see. As always, I truly enjoyed making this rice dish and I do hope you all will like it. It’s a flexible dish as you can turn, twist and bend it to your will; change the meat; use ham, bacon, seafood or don’t add any meat at all; change the colour of the rice….Just put your own signature on it and make it yours. Here’s rice delight.
Rice Delight Recipe
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 c diced chicken, meat or sausage
1 c sliced mushrooms
1 green sweet pepper, diced
1 small onion, diced
2 c baby corn, chopped
1 c sliced water chestnuts
1 tbs ginger, grated
2 c rice
4 c chicken stock or water
1 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 c parmesan cheese (optional)
1/4 tsp. salt or to taste
2 bay leaves
Boil the rice with the turmeric powder, bay leaves and 1/4 tsp salt.
Drain and set aside.
In a pot, heat 2 tbsp oil. Saute the ginger, onion and garlic until tender.
Note: You can add the bay leaves ( from the rice before) to push the flavour.
Add the baby corn and water chestnuts. Stir.
Then add the sweet peppers, mushrooms and diced sausage or meat of choice. Stir for 1 minute or until meat is cooked through.
Note: I’m adding that extra note for those of you who would like to try a different meat like shrimp or mussels. In my case I used chicken salami so not much cooking would be required.
Lower flame, add rice and mix well. Adjust salt if desired. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese and mix (optional). Serve hot.
*Jumbie – Spirit
Well there you have it, a delightful rice delight that you could bend to your will. What variations can you come up with? I’d like to know. So if you liked this rice delight recipe why not leave a comment or two.
Ah gone 🙂