Spring is right around the corner, and what better way to brighten your table (and your mood) after a long winter than with a wholesome, hearty side dish that boasts plenty of bold colours.
Cranberries, orange bell pepper, parsley, almonds, orzo and long-grain rice simmer together for a vibrant side dish that is as delicious as it is beautiful. So grab your apron and get cooking!
Kardea Brown’s Rainbow Rice Pilaf
Total Time: 45 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1/2 cup diced celery (from 1 rib)
1 orange bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 1/2 cups long-grain rice
1/2 cup orzo
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp minced fresh thyme
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1. Heat the oil in a large deep-sided skillet with a lid over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until they are just beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the rice and orzo and cook, stirring constantly, until the orzo begins to brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic, oregano, thyme, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the garlic is fragrant, about 2 minutes.
2. Stir in the vegetable broth, bring to a simmer and then lower heat and cook, covered, until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and let sit, covered, for about 10 minutes. Fluff the rice with a fork and transfer to a serving dish. Top with the cranberries, almonds and parsley. Serve warm.