Thursday, July 18, 2013

Jalapeno Peach Rice

I just wasn't feeling the peaches and herb ingredient choices for the July Improv Challenge. Usually I have two or three ideas going, but not this time, and I was going to pass. Despite planning on skipping this month, peaches and herbs sort of hung around the back of my mind, and it kind of bothered me that I just couldn't think of a good way to put them together.
I don't normally read Southern Living, but I happened to pick up an issue and found a recipe for sweet tea rice with peaches and chives. Since I grow chives in my herb garden and our peach tree is overflowing, I decided to give this a try.

The first time I made this I used the sweet tea, but it was too sweet for us. Sweet tea is just not a thing here in Southern California like it is in the South, and we are not at all used to the sweet flavor (we drink our tea over ice and unsweetened), but if you enjoy sweet tea, you would probably like the rice cooked with it as in the original recipe. I did try it with regular tea and it turns it a nice color, but didn't really add any special flavor. If you're not making it sweet, I don't think it matters what liquid you use to cook your rice.

This recipe is a big departure from my usual  posts, but it is a keeper enjoyed either hot or cold. The jalapenos add a nice bite, and a necessary contrast to the sweetness from the peaches and tea, but if spice isn't your thing, adjust the amount of jalapenos to suite your taste.

Jalapeno Peach Rice
adapted from Southern Living

2 cups liquid (sweet tea, tea, chicken stock, or water)
1 cup uncooked long-grain rice
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 large jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced *
1 large fresh peach, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper


1. Bring liquid to a boil in a 3-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat; stir in rice and 1/2 tsp. salt. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes or until tea is absorbed and rice is tender.

2. Meanwhile, melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat; add pecans, and cook, stirring often, 3 to 4 minutes or until toasted and fragrant. Add jalapeño, and sauté 1 minute. Stir in hot cooked rice, diced fresh peach, chives, 1/4 tsp. salt, and white pepper.

* My jalapenos were not very hot so I used 2.

Link :Foodie Friday