Fragrant Brown Rice Pilaf - with fennel, raisins and other veggies

Fragrant Brown Rice Pilaf - with fennel, raisins and other veggies

I love all the smells in the house when this side dish is being made! I never make it the same way, I always seem to add something new to it. But the basic recipe is the same and the goal is to balance the savouriness with the subtle sweetness of fennel and golden raisins in this delicious and healthy brown rice pilaf recipe.

Besides being delicious, brown rice is a highly nutritious whole grain. So dig in and enjoy!

In tonight’s dinner, I topped it with flaky cod for a complete meal. Simple, quick and delicious!

DifficultyBeginner

Yields4 Servings
Prep Time10 minsCook Time50 minsTotal Time1 hr

 2 tbsp olive oil
 2 celery stalks, chopped
 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
 ½ yellow onion, diced
 ½ fennel bulb, sliced thinly, optional
 pinch of red pepper flakes
 pinch of cinnamon, optional
 2 cups brown rice
 4 cups chicken stock (or as much as required according to the package - some brands of rice may need less or more)
  cup golden raisins
 kosher salt to taste
 freshly ground black pepper to taste
 parsley, for garnish, optional

1

Heat oil in a medium pan or a Dutch oven. Add mirepoix - celery, onion and carrot as well as fennel. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, fragrant and just beginning to brown. It may take between 5 - 10 minutes, depending on the size of your pan.

2

Add cinnamon and red pepper flakes and cook for another minute or so. Add dry brown rice and cook for two minutes until all the rice grains are well coated with oil and the rice is beginning to smell nutty.

3

Add the stock, bring to simmer, cover, reduce to low and continue simmering as per the directions on your brown rice package, but typically it takes about 45 minutes for brown rice. Do not peek inside the pot for the duration of cooking as you don't want the steam to escape.

4

After the rice finishes cooking, taste it, adjust the seasoning with more salt and pepper as needed. Stir in the raisins, cover and allow the pot to sit covered for about 5 minutes before serving for the raisins to steam and soften. Garnish with parsley and serve.

Ingredients

 2 tbsp olive oil
 2 celery stalks, chopped
 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
 ½ yellow onion, diced
 ½ fennel bulb, sliced thinly, optional
 pinch of red pepper flakes
 pinch of cinnamon, optional
 2 cups brown rice
 4 cups chicken stock (or as much as required according to the package - some brands of rice may need less or more)
  cup golden raisins
 kosher salt to taste
 freshly ground black pepper to taste
 parsley, for garnish, optional

Directions

1

Heat oil in a medium pan or a Dutch oven. Add mirepoix - celery, onion and carrot as well as fennel. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, fragrant and just beginning to brown. It may take between 5 - 10 minutes, depending on the size of your pan.

2

Add cinnamon and red pepper flakes and cook for another minute or so. Add dry brown rice and cook for two minutes until all the rice grains are well coated with oil and the rice is beginning to smell nutty.

3

Add the stock, bring to simmer, cover, reduce to low and continue simmering as per the directions on your brown rice package, but typically it takes about 45 minutes for brown rice. Do not peek inside the pot for the duration of cooking as you don't want the steam to escape.

4

After the rice finishes cooking, taste it, adjust the seasoning with more salt and pepper as needed. Stir in the raisins, cover and allow the pot to sit covered for about 5 minutes before serving for the raisins to steam and soften. Garnish with parsley and serve.

Brown Rice Pilaf

Make it Vegetarian/Vegan: replace chicken stock with vegetable stock.

Happens to be Dairy-Free.

Happens to be Gluten-Free: as with all gluten-free recipes, ensure all your ingredients are gluten free and not cross-contaminated, this includes your chicken stock.

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