A Speedy Company Dinner
We had company for dinner last night. And since I’m in the middle of getting my house ready for a reunion of former coworkers on Friday, I didn’t have a lot of time to pull this meal together.
When I need a no-fuss main dish, I rely on Spicy Grilled Shrimp. The shrimp are grilled in their shells after marinating for just 30 minutes. And clean-up is a breeze when there are no pots and pans to wash afterwards.
Another go-to choice when I am time-pressed is Herbed Rice, an easy side dish I developed over the years. Simply cook rice in canned chicken broth and water, then toss with a mixture of minced onion, butter and herbs. If you own a rice cooker, this one is as easy as it gets. This rice will go with shrimp, fish or chicken—and plays well with any meats.
2 ¼ cups long-grain rice (or 3 rice cooker cups of rice)
1 can (14.5 ounces) less sodium chicken broth, plus water as needed
1 cup diced onion
3 tablespoons butter
¼ cup chopped fresh herbs (see note)
Cook rice in a rice cooker, substituting chicken broth for the water. You will need more liquid than the 1 can of broth; use water for the remainder.
Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, melt butter over medium heat. And onion and sauté, just until onion is cooked, about 2 minutes. Add herbs and toss in the heat for about 30 seconds, just to take the raw edge off; set aside. When rice is done, use a wooden rice paddle or a large spoon to fluff the rice; scrape butter mixture into rice pot and toss to coat evenly. Makes about 6 servings.
- For the ¼ cup of herbs, I used 1 tablespoon of chopped dill to 3 tablespoons chopped parsley. You can use all parsley, or cilantro, basil, or just about any fresh herb you like in combination with parsley, that would work with your main dish.
- When I have it, I like to add a handful of chopped toasted almonds or toasted pine nuts to the rice.
- If you don’t have a rice cooker, you can cook the rice on stovetop following package instructions.
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