Although Mexican rice and Spanish rice are terms often used interchangeably, there are marked differences between the two dishes — saffron and chilis.
Spanish rice is red-orange because of the tomatoes and saffron.
Mexican rice has tomatoes and, often, tomato sauce, no saffron and is a bit hot because of the addition of chilis.
Both are delicious.
This Mexican rice-inspired dish has no tomato sauce nor fresh tomatoes. Instead, I used sun-dried tomatoes soaked in herbed olive oil.
A la Mexican rice
- 2 cups long-grain rice rinsed and drained
- 2 tablespoons garlic minced
- 1/2 cup onion chopped
- 1 bird’s eye chili finely chopped
- 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil from the jar of sun-dried tomatoes
- 3 to 4 cups meat broth (or use fish stock)
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- a pinch of cumin
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped
- 1 teaspoon fresh cilantro chopped
- 1 tablespoon lime or lemon juice
- Heat the olive oil in a pan. Saute the garlic, onion, sun-dried tomatoes and chili until fragrant, about a minute.
- Add the rice. Stir to coat each grain with oil.
- Pour the contents of the pan into the rice cooker. Pour in the broth. Add salt and pepper (how much depends on how well-seasoned the broth already is), and the cumin. Turn on the rice cooker and cook the rice as you normally would.
- When the rice is done, leave it in the cooker for another ten minutes. Then, fluff the grains with a fork and stir in the parsley, cilantro and lemon juice. Add more salt and pepper, if needed.