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Carb up with rice.

After two decades on a merry-go-round, American tastes are coming home. Simple, wholesome foods are reappearing at dinner tables and on menus across the country.

We're returning to basic foods, like rice. In one form or another, rice is a staple in the diet of many cultures around the globe. In Eastern countries, a meal isn't really a meal if rice isn't present. The tiny grain ranks as one of nature's superfoods, supplying the human body with nutrients vital to our health and survival--and in line with today's heart-healthy lifestyles.

Rice had a rather inauspicious introduction to the United States. In 1694, a ship sailing from Madagascar to England was thrown off course and forced to land at Charleston, South Carolina. Grateful for the hospitality offered to him and his crew, the ship's captain presented the governor a handful of rough rice grains, which the colonists used for seed.

Since then, rice has appeared alongside, in between, on top of, and underneath every dish imaginable. Economical, easy to prepare, and infinitely versatile, rice is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates--the energy food--which nutritionists recommend comprise at least 50 percent of our diet. Rice is low in colories at only 82 calories per half-cup serving, contains only a trace of fat, is cholesterol free, and offers very little sodium (unless salt is added during cooking). Brown rice, a natural source of the much-publicized rice bran, has a slightly chewy texture and nut-like flavor, and offers appreciable amounts of life-sustaining fiber.

For the health conscious, the good news is that rice is one food you don't have to give up! Nix the salt and forget that fat--just enjoy the texture and flavor that rice adds to cereals, soups, salads, entrees, and breads. Brown Rice Royal is a flavorful companion to an entree of fish or chicken. Unusual and delicious, Spinach Feta Rice, served with fresh fish, is a tempting departure from tradition. Lentil and Rice Stew is a light and lively lunch. An American favorite, Stuffed Green Peppers, is always welcome at mealtimes.

Arroz Blanco

(Makes 6 servings)

1 tablespoon margarine 1/2 cup chopped onion 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 cup uncooked rice 2 cups chicken broth made with 1 1/2 tablespoons low-sodium chicken bouillon granules

Melt margarine in 2- to 3-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic; cook until onion is tender. Add rice and broth. Bring to boil; stir. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 15 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed. Fluff with fork.

To microwave: Combine margarine, onion, and garlic in deep 2- to 3-quart microwave baking dish. Cover and cook on HIGH 2 minutes. Stin in rice and broth; cover and cook on HIGH 5 minutes. Reduce setting to MEDIUM and cook 15 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed. Let stand 5 minutes. Fluff with fork.

Per Serving (1/2 cup): Calories: 147 Protein: 2.7 gm Fat: 2.1 gm Sodium: 21 mg Cholesterol: 0 mg Carbohydrate: 28.3 gm

Green Rice

(Makes 6 servings)

2 chiles 1 jalapeno pepper 1 tablespoon olive oil 1/4 cup sliced green onions 1/4 cup snipped or 1 tablespoon dried cilantro 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano leaves 1 recipe Arroz Blanco (see recipe, above)

Chop chiles and pepper in food processor until minced but not liquid. Spoon olive oil into large skillet over low heat. Add chiles and cook 1 minute over medium heat. Stir in onions and cilantro; cook 15-30 seconds. Add rice mixture and oregano; heat.

To microwave: Prepare chiles and pepper as directed. Combine chiles, onions, cilantro, and margarine in 2- to 3-quart microwave baking dish. Cook on HIGH 2-3 minutes. Add rice mixture and oregano; cover with waxed paper and cook on HIGH 3 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes.

Per Serving (2/3 cup): Calories: 178 Protein: 3.1 gm Fat: 4.5 gm Sodium: 63 mg Cholesterol: 0 mg Carbohydrates: 30.3 gm

Rice with Tomato and Chiles

(Makes 6 servings)

1 green pepper, diced 1/4 cup chopped onion 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 recipe Arroz Blanco (see recipe, above) 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) low-sodium, whole tomatoes, drained and chopped or 2 large fresh tomatoes 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves 2 tablespoon snipped cilantro for garnish

Cook green pepper, onion, and jalapeno pepper in oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until tendercrips. Stir in rice mixture, tomatoes, and oregano; cook 5 minutes longer. Garnish with cilantro.

To microwave: Combine green pepper, onion, jalapeno pepper and oil in 2- to 3-quart microwave baking dish. Cook on HIGH 3-4 minutes. Add rice mixture, tomatoes, and oregano; cover with waxed paper and cook on HIGH 3-4 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes. Garnish with cilantro.

Per Serving (2/3 cup): Calories: 194 Protein: 3.7 gm Fat: 4.7 gm Sodium: 29 mg Cholesterol: 0 mg Carbohydrate: 33.4 gm

Spinach Feta Rice

(Makes 6 servings)

1 cup uncooked white rice 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth 1 cup water 1 medium onion, chopped 1 cup (about 4 ounces) sliced fresh mushrooms 2 cloves garlic, minced Vegetable cooking spray 1 tablespoon lemon juice 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves 6 cups shredded fresh spinach leaves (about 1/4 pound) 3 ounces fera cheese, crumbled 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1/4 cup chopped red pepper for garnish (optional)

Combine rice, broth, and water in medium saucepan. Bring to boil; stir once or twice. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 15 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed. Cook onion, mushrooms, and garlic in large skillet coated with cooking spray until onion is tender. Stir in lemon juice and oregano. Add spinach, cheese, and pepper to rise; toss lightly until spinach is wilted. Garnish with red pepper.

To microwave: Combine rice, broth, and water in deep 2- to 3-quart microwave baking dish. Cover and cook on HIGH 5 minutes. Reduce setting to MEDIUM and cook 15 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed. Combine onion, mushrooms, and garlic in 1-quart microwave baking dish coated with cooking spray. Cook on HIGH 2-3 minutes. Add vegetables, lemon juice, oregano, spinach, cheese, and pepper to hot cooked rice. Cook on HIGH 1-2 minutes or until spinach is wilted. Garnish.

Per Serving (1 cup): Calories: 180 Protein: 6.0 gm Fat: 3.5 gm Sodium: 188 mg Cholesterol: 13 mg Carbohydrates: 30.3 gm

Brown Rice and Lentil Stew

(Makes 4 servings)

3/4 cup uncooked brown rice 1/2 cup dry lentils, rinsed 1/2 cup chooped onions 1/2 cup sliced celery 1/2 cup sliced carrots 1/4 cup fresh parsley 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning 1 clove garlic, minced 1 bay leaf 2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth made with 2 1/2 tablespoons low-sodium granules 3 chopped fresh tomatoes 1 tablespoon cider vinegar

Combine all ingredients and 2 cups water in Dutch oven or large saucepan; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, 55 minutes to 1 hour, or until rice is tender. Remove and discard bay leaf.

Per Serving (1 1/4 cup): Calories: 279 Protein: 11.6 gm Fat: 1.5 gm Sodium: 50 mg Cholesterol: trace Carbohydrate: 55.1 gm

Oriental Rice Pilaf

(Makes 6 servings)

1/2 cup chopped onion 1 clove garlic, minced 1 tablespoon sesame oil 2 1/4 cups low-sodium beef broth 1 cup uncooked rice 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce 1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions 2 teaspoons pimiento 2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted

Cook onion and garlic in oil in 2- to 3-quart saucepan over medium heat until onion is tender. Add broth, rice, soy sauce, and pepper flakes. Bring to a boil; stir once or twice. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 15 minutes or until rise is tender and liquid is absorbed. Stir green onions, red pepper, and sesame seeds into cooked rise; cover and let stand 5 minutes. Fluff with fork.

Per Serving (1 heaping cup): Calories: 179 Protein: 3.6 gm Fat: 4.8 gm Sodium: 107 mg Cholesterol: 1 mg Carbohydrate: 30.1 gm

Harvest Rice

(Makes 6 servings)

1 cup thinly sliced carrots 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 2 medium apples, cored and chopped 1 cup sliced green onions 3 cups cooked brown rice, (cooked with 1 1/2 tablespoons low-sodium chicken bouillon granules in water) 1/2 cup raisins 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted

Cook carrots in oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until tendercrisp. Add apples and onions; cook 5 minutes. Stir in rise, raisins, and sesame seeds. Cook 1-2 minutes more, stirring, until thoroughly heated.

To microwave: Combine carrots and oil in 2-quart microwave baking dish. Cook on HIGH 2-3 minutes or until tender crisp. Add apples and onions; continue cooking on HIGH 3-4 minutes. Stir in rise, raisins, sesame seeds, and salt. Cover with waxed paper and cook on HIGH 3-4 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes, or until thoroughly heated.

Per Serving (1 cup): Calories: 252 Protein: 4.1 gm Fat: 4.2 gm Sodium: 23 mg Cholesterol: 0 mg Carbohydrate: 50 gm

Health Nut Brown Rice

(Makes 6 servings)

1/2 cup shredded carrot 1/2 cup shredded zucchini 3 tablespoons unsalted sunflower kernels 3 tablespoons sliced almonds (unsalted) 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional) 1 teaspoon margarine 3 cups cooked brown rice (cooked with 1 1/2 tablespoons low-sodium chicken broth granules in water) 2 tablespoons snipped parsley or 1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes

Cook carrot, zucchini, sunflower kernels, almonds, and pepper flakes in margarine in skillet over medium-high heat until almonds are browned. Add rice and parsley; stil until heated.

To microwave: Combine carrot, zucchini, sunflower kernels, almonds, pepper flakes, and margarine in 2-quart microwave baking dish. Cook on HIGH 3-4 minutes or until almonds are lightly browned. Add rice and parsley; cook on HIGH 3-4 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes, or until heated.

Per Serving (3/4 cup): Calories: 189 Protein: 4.8 gm Fat: 6.2 gms Sodium: 13 mg Cholesterol: 0 mg Carbohydrate: 28.4 gms

Stufffed Green Peppers

(Makes 6 servings)

3 large green peppers, cut in half lengthwise 1 pound lean ground beef (96 percent fat-free) or lean ground turkey 2 cups cooked rice, no salt added 1 teaspoon onion powder 1 teaspoon ground thyme 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper 1/4 cup egg substitute 15-ounce can low-salt tomato sauce, divided 2 tablespoons low-sodium beef bouillon granules

Place pepper halves in shallow 3-quart microwave baking dish. Cover and cook on HIGH 4 minutes. Combine meat, rice, seasonings, egg substitute, and 1/2 cup low-salt tomato sauce in large mixing bowl. Mound beef mixture in pepper halves. Cover and cook on HIGH 10 minutes, rotating once. Combine remaining tomato sauce and bouillon granules. Pour over stuffed peppers. Cook uncovered on HIGH 5 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes.

Per Serving (1 pepper): Calories: 264 Protein: 15.7 gm Fat: 11.3 gm Sodium: 110 mg Cholesterol: 67 mg Carbohydrate: 23.9 gm

Brown Rice Royal

(Makes 6 servings)

2 cups (about 8 ounces) sliced fresh mushrooms 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions 1/2 teaspoon onion powder 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 3 cups cooked brown rice (cooked in low-sodium beef broth)

Cook mushrooms and onions in oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until tender. Add rice. Stir until thoroughly heated.

To microwave: Combine mushrooms, onions, and oil in 2-quart microwave baking dish. Cook on HIGH 2-3 minutes. Add rice; continue to cook on HIGH 3-4 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes, or until thoroughly heated.

Per Serving (3/4 cup): Calories: 142 Protein: 2.7 gm Fat: 2.4 gm Sodium: 15 mg Cholesterol: 0 mg Carohydrate: 24.9 gm
COPYRIGHT 1992 Saturday Evening Post Society
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:includes recipes; add carbohydrates to the diet
Author:Perry, Patrick
Publication:Saturday Evening Post
Date:Mar 1, 1992
Words:1965
Previous Article:Bran-new ideas.
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