Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Chicken and Okra Gumbo

A neighbor happened to give us some okra the other night so I decided to put it right to use in this delicious gumbo. I used this recipe courtesy of Nola Cuisine. It definitely hit the spot and was the best gumbo I've ever made. I'm eager to try a few other variations with seafood the next time I have a taste for gumbo. Although the gumbo recipe is terrific, what I really wanted to share was the recipe/technique used for cooking the rice. It was super tasty, not sticky, and the perfect accompaniment for the gumbo and would go great with so many other recipes. You actually boil the rice in a large pot filled with water much like you would cook pasta. Then you strain it and finish it in the oven which helps dry it out a little...but you could totally skip the oven step if you wanted to. Here is the actual recipe...try it out!

Creole Boiled Rice
1 quart of Boiling Water
1 Cup Basmati or Jasmine Rice
2 Bay Leaves
1 Tablespoon Kosher Salt
1 Tablespoon Unsalted Butter (Optional)
Bring the water to a boil with the Bay leaves. Add the salt. Add the rice, stir once and then do not stir again otherwise it will get sticky. When it comes back to a boil, partially cover it. Cook for about 11 minutes, but taste it, and make sure it is "al dente" with a little bite left to it. Next you need to drain it-I used a mesh strainer which was perfect. Take out the bay leaves, and if desired, place it into a 400 degree oven with the butter on top for about 15 minutes; this will help dry the rice out.

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