Thursday, January 26, 2012

How to Make Mexican Rice...

After living in Washington for a couple of months in 2010, I started to get a little homesick. So I called my mom and asked her to give me the recipe for Mexican rice. I've tweaked the recipe here and there since then and now my rice turns out awesome nearly every time.

Authentic, really authentic Mexican rice needs to have popped rice kernels. A lot of restaurants don't do this. Tsk, tsk, tsk.

Note: the image above was not taken by me (and will come down if SOPA passes, grrr...) but it looks almost identical to the way my Mexican rice looks. That is what you are aiming for if you follow this recipe:

1 cup long grain rice
approx. 1 1/2 cups canola or vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups water
1 small onion chopped
1/2 can of Hunts Petite Diced Tomatoes
1/2 cup frozen corn (or any small frozen or fresh veggies)
Garlic Salt

1. Chop onion ahead of time so that it is ready when you need it. Also have the Petite Diced Tomatoes handy.)
2. Turn the stove to a medium flame. If you're using an electric stove like me, "6" or "7" setting is good.
3. In a medium sized sauce pan, pour in the rice and oil. Use *just* enough oil to barely cover the rice. Stir and watch rice for few minutes.
4. When you see a few kernels start to pop (a few, meaning 4 or 5) strain the oil out of the pan. make sure you strain it thoroughly.
5. Return the strained rice into pan, along with the onion and tomatoes, stir for a few seconds.
6. Add the water. Stir some more.
7. Add about a tablespoon of garlic salt and the frozen corn. Stir.
8. Bring the mixture to a boil for a few seconds.
9. Then, very important, change the heat on the stove to the lowest possible setting. If you're using gas, then "simmer." If you're using electric, then "low" or "1."
10. COVER the pan (very important) and let simmer on low flame for 25 minutes. Do not stir during this time.

Serve as a side dish.

This recipe can also be cut in half very easily, using 1/2 cup rice and 3/4 water and less garlic salt. The salt is optional, but the rice tastes pretty bland without it. It tastes better when you salt the rice during the process than just using regular table salt on it later.

Enjoy! If you use this recipe, I would love to hear about your results. And, of course, there are hundreds of variations on how to make Mexican rice. This is the recipe that has worked the best for us.


Sally said...

I love recipes from friends and relatives! It's fun for me, since I spend so much time in the kitchen, to see what other people I know are doing in theirs.

MOM said...

Hi hon! This is MOM...I thought we always had to double the water to ratio of rice??? Also, you know that I make this exact rice with BROWN rice, and it turns out delicious. Only, the simmering lasts for 43-45 min. instead of 25. You explained everything well. The most important thing is to stay right there and not neglect the project so nothing burns...until the last part when it simmers covered. YES...if the kernels don't pop, it's not done right. Leave it covered for a little while on stove after you shut off heat...that insures all kernels popping.

Kristie said...

Just as a side note (because this post seems to get a lot of attention,) doubling the water to rice ratio still made my rice turn out too watery. This is one of the tweaks I mentioned before.