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Crazy Rice/Crazy Quinoa

December 8, 2012

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My friend Robin shared with me one of her standard cooking strategies:  look in the cupboard & fridge, pick a few of things, make rice and then throw them together.  She’s clearly an artist version of a cook.  I’m more of a scientist, so I have a much more structured strategy, though the exercise did help me to loosen up!

Start 1 c rice or quinoa cooking.

1 pkg of Spinach Feta sausage, cut into 1/3″ to 1/2″ half moons (Sausage provides the bulk of the flavor for the dish, milder sausages I have tried are too dull for me, the spicier versions were too spicy for me.)  Sauté in giant skillet until sausage pieces are browned and there are brown bits on the bottom of the pan (Tip: non-stick pans won’t work for this).  Meanwhile cut onion and other hard veggies (carrots, celery).  Remove sausage and set aside.

Next, sauté the onion & other hard veggies, adding liquid to deglaze (i.e. dissolve those yummy brown coating on the bottom of the pan).  The liquid can be wine, stock or water, in that order of preference for added flavor.  Meanwhile cut other veggies.

Add rest of veggies, timing it so everything is done cooking (softened but barely) at the same time.  I usually use zucchini, yellow squash, broccoli, red bell pepper.  Can also use frozen veggies, looks like there was frozen asparagus, pees, corn & carrots in the above batch.  Chickpeas work too.

Can also add pinenuts, slivered almonds or peanuts.  And/or crumbled goat cheese.

Scoop rice onto plate then top with goodies.  Or Allen’s method, stir in rice/quinoa then serve.

Total time:  45 minutes.  Works well as leftovers.

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