We Dominicans love rice. It’s no wonder that we hear “it’s not lunch without rice” all the time.
The sad thing is that we always stick to the same kind of rice. The long-grain rice that is used in traditional Dominican cooking is one of about 40,000 varieties of the grain. You read right, 40,000!
What I love in this spiced wild rice mix with cauliflower — besides the lovely flavor — is that it includes 4 of these less-known varieties. And I didn’t have to mix anything. It all comes in a jar of RiceSelect Royal Blend rices.
I have to say that I approached this dish with a bit of caution. I don’t have that much experience with “exotic” rice. Each rice has its cooking tricks: different cooking times, methods, rice-to-water ratios.
I am happy to say I got it right the first time. Sadly, I don’t get to say that as often as you’d think.
I love that the cauliflower remained firm, instead of turning into the kind of vegetable mush I despise.
The addition of dry spices takes this dish to a new level of strong flavors that stick to the tongue. It’s hard to call it a “side” dish, it’s not the kind of dish meant to play second string to another one. I suggest you serve it with a mild-flavored dish, like steamed chicken or fish, or a nice plate of warm lentils if you go the vegetarian route.
I am very glad I decided to participate in the RiceSelect campaign. The rice did not disappoint. I am left with 3 more rice mixes that I am very intrigued by, and very excited to try soon.
Judging by the results with this mix, the other ones must be equally amazing. No wonder they called it the Royal Blend.
- 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil (peanut, corn or soy)
- 1 tablespoon of garlic salt
- 1/2 teaspoon of cumin powder
- 1 tablespoon of turmeric powder
- 2 large carrots cut into thin strips
- 1 large cauliflower head , cut into large florets
- 3 cups of Rice Select Royal Blend (texmati, white, brown, wild and red)
- 4 cups of boiling water
Heat the oil in a thick-bottomed pot over medium heat.
Add garlic salt, cumin powder and turmeric. Mix well.
Add carrot and cauliflower. Sautee stirring for 30 seconds.
Add the rice and stir mixing well.
Add boiling water. Stir.
Simmer over medium heat until the water has evaporated, stirring frequently.
Lower heat to very low and simmer covered for 15 minutes.
Uncover, stir and simmer for another 5 minutes.
Remove from the pot and serve.