Rice & Noodle Pilaf
You can never have too may side dishes in your menu arsenal. You can also never have too many quick and easy side dishes that go with everything. As you may have guessed, that is what this is. It never hurts to state the obvious.
It is easy to slip into a rut when it comes to meals and making the same old veggies or potatoes with your meal is a common gripe I get emails about. As a gal who is kind of addicted to variety in my food, I totally understand. I don’t mind leftovers, but I often will wait several months before making a dish a second time. There are just too many foods out there to try and make and experiment with and enjoy! Why limit yourself and repeat?
That said, I run into the same issues everyone else does. Budget, time limits, busy lives, etc all play a factor in my menu planning. Earlier this month I shared a recipe for jazzing up store-bought marinara sauce. I pull out that method when I am in a hurry and have limited ingredients. This side dish is similar, in that it uses pantry ingredients and is incredibly inexpensive. While my husband and I continue to build our new home, our schedules are often interrupted, thus ruining my careful planning. I am also faced with the current challenge of trying to feed our family of five on a fairly fixed budget. To that end, I am trying to take advantage of what I already have available in the house. That has been my goal recently and this dish couldn’t be more perfect.
I have been making it for a few years now and it never fails to fill in any gaps in my menus. Kids love it, adults love it, and the simplicity lends itself to just about anything you can think of to serve it with. Exactly what I need. Think of it as a rice and noodle lifeline that you can tie together into a little rope to pull you up and out of that menu rut you may be in!
2 T butter
1 small onion, diced small
1/2 c dried angel hair, vermicelli, or thin spaghetti noodles, broken into small pieces
1 1/2 c white rice
3 c chicken broth or water
salt and pepper to taste
In a large saute pan with a lid, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent and cooked, about 5 minutes. Don’t let them brown! Add the dried pasta and stir it all together until toasted and fragrant. Add the rice and stir in the liquid. Bring to a boil stirring often, then lower the heat to slow simmer, cover, and let bubble until cooked and all the liquid is absorbed-about 20 minutes. Be sure the heat is low enough so that it won’t burn, but keeps it cooking! When it is finished and cooked through, stir and fluff, then taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper as necessary. Enjoy!