Here is a simple and flavorful side dish for your next fiesta. If you are vegan, omit the cheese topping (don’t worry, there’s enough flavor that no one would miss it). If you are trying to eat a little healthier, this is also a great way to dress up brown rice.
1/2 white or yellow onion, diced
2 bundles cilantro, destemmed and chopped
1 cup white rice
2 cups water (filtered if your water quality is poor)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, plus a pinch
1/2 cup grated queso fresco
Preheat a medium sized sauce pan that has a well-fitting lid to medium heat. Put oil, then onion and rice in the saucepan and stirn to coat. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and stir regularly to ensure even cooking. Once onions are translucent and rice is starting to brown, stir in water, garlic powder, salt and half of the cilantro (reserving the second half to finish). Turn heat up to high and bring to a boil, stirring occassionally. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low, stir and place lid on the pot. Let rice cook for 20 minutes (do NOT lift the lid until your timer goes off). Once done, remove from heat and stir in remaining cilantro. Serve family style on a large platter. Top with cheese and maybe a few cilantro leaves for garnish.
Some people don’t know this but cilantro is coriander. Coriander is essentially cilantro seed. They both are used in dishes and give a slightly different flavor. Next time you are cooking with coriander seed, throw a few in some dirt and see what grows!
Coriander is often used in love and lust potions. Next time you invite your sweetheart over, cook this dish, stir in your feelings of love, togetherness and romance and see if it doesn’t create something spicy.