Growing up, my mom made her own version of Spanish rice which I faithfully made for the first few years of my marriage. When we moved abroad, several years ago, I stopped making my mom's recipe and sort of forgot about it. And then we moved to Texas and I've eaten more Tex-Mex in the past two years than the rest of my life combined. All that to say, I needed a Spanish rice recipe like the ones I've been eating in the restaurants and not like the one I grew up on. So for the past year I've been making this recipe anytime we have Mexican food for dinner and we've loved it. (And--funny thing--it wasn't until I started making this recipe that my husband admitted that he never liked my mother's recipe in the first place!)
(adapted from Simply Recipes)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups basmati rice
1 onion, diced (about 1 cup)
1 green pepper, diced (about 1 cup)
1-2 cloves minced garlic
2 2/3 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried cilantro (optional)
1) Heat olive oil in large skillet on medium/high heat. Add the rice and stir it so that the rice is lightly coated with the oil. Cook on medium high heat, stirring often, until much of the rice is golden. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently another 3 minutes, until they begin to soften. Add the garlic and bell pepper, cooking until the onions are translucent and softened, about a minute more.
2) Add the broth, diced tomatoes, salt, oregano and dried cilantro (if using) to the rice. Bring to a simmer, cover the pan, and lower the heat to barely maintain a low simmer. Cook for 15-25 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed and rice is soft. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Enjoy!