Thursday, June 20, 2013

Greek Lemon and Dill Rice with Feta

Serves 6
Recipe from The Ultimate Rice Cooker Cookbook
Husband-Tested in Alice’s Kitchen

When I retired, I made a gift of a really nice rice cooker to myself.  Besides my stand mixer, I find the rice cooker to be one of the most useful appliances I own.  I make several batches of brown rice each week in it.  I just rinse the rice, measure out the liquid, hit the button and voila, I have brown rice.  For this recipe, I used white rice**, which we rarely eat anymore, but this dish is quite wonderful with Greek flavors of lemon, dill and feta. Now that I know how yummy this dish is, I will try it with brown rice so we can have it more often.

Cooking spray or olive oil
1 ½ cups white basmati rice**
2 cups chicken broth
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 small onions, chopped
¼ cup pine nuts or slivered almonds, toasted
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
1 Tablespoon minced fresh dill
1 ½ teaspoons minced fresh mint
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 lemon, cut in 8 wedges (for garnish)

Coat the rice bowl with cooking spray or a bit of olive oil.  Add the rice and broth to the bowl.  Set the rice cooker for the regular white rice cycle and start.  When the machine switches to keep warm, let it steam for 10 minutes.  While the rice steams, heat the olive oil in a small skillet, then add the onions and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until soft.
When the 10 minutes of steaming are up, add the onions and pine nuts (or almonds) to the rice, along with the lemon juice, dill, and mint.  Stir with a plastic rice paddle or a wooden spoon to combine.  Close the cover and continue on 'keep warm' for 10 more minutes.  Transfer the rice to a serving dish, and top with the feta and lemon wedges.

**This can also be made with brown rice- just increase the chicken stock to 2 2/3 cups.
**To make this without a rice cooker, cook the rice according to the package directions using broth for the water.  When the rice is done, add the rest of the ingredients, place a lid on the pot and allow the rice to steam for 10 more minutes.
**This rice will hold on the Keep Warm Cycle (on the rice cooker) for 1 to 2 hours, if necessary, but don’t add the lemon juice, dill and mint until 10 minutes before you plan to serve.
Here is Greek Lemon and Dill Rice with Feta, served along side 
Turkey Meatloaf, Quick Pickled Cucumbers and golden tomatoes.

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