I've had rice on the brain lately. In risotto. In pilaf. In pudding. With varied rice. With nuts. With dates. With vegetables. With herbs. But always with vegetable broth... Seriously. Like a record spinning on the turntable. But never catching a groove. And no one is intervening to stop the incessant rotation.
I am not sure if it is because of my recent obsession with this or this. Or my recent acquisition of this. (An item that spent a VERY LONG time on my wish list, but could finally justify when I was able to get it for ~1/3 or retail - major score - I am still giddy over it all. Absolutely, indubitably giddy.)
Since I don't foresee a rice intervention coming my way anytime in the near future, I am running with it.... And I am kind of blaming FFwD. Seriously. It has been a total
push towards gateway to trying different cooking techniques. And flavor combinations (some of which I still don't understand). And ingredients.
And now this girl who was brought up on plain Jane Northeastern "country fare" has the
brazenness courage to attempt dishes like Borani Kadoo or Chicken B'stilla or even this - my new favorite sweet treat and not be totally freaked out by not knowing what the end result is going to be. (Yeah, that's kind of a bad trait of mine - but I am working on it...)
Who knew that bottle of ground cardamom (that I thought was so exotic and wasn't I just the smarty pants gettin' me some of that?) would now be joined by a jar of cardamom pods? Or that I would one day be in possession not one, but seven different types of salt - AND know that they are different (or that I would no longer even possess a carton of Morton's Iodized table salt)? When did I become that person?
My first experience with fried rice was at the house of my best childhood friend. Up until that point, I can remember eating rice three ways: 1) in stuffed peppers, 2) in chicken & cream soup casserole and 3) plain with milk, butter & brown sugar (still my all time favorite way to eat rice).
But my friend's mother (Tia Martha) was from Colombia. And she FRIED her rice in oil with onion before cooking. And used Sazon. And added garbanzo beans to the rice. And made tamales from scratch. And had a tortilla press. And used cilantro (which I had never heard of). And made homemade burritos. And I was hooked. It was all so new and different. And she made it look so simple. Oh, how I couldn't wait to have dinners at her house (and somehow an extra person was never an issue - it just always worked out).
And when my friend had a house and family of her own, it floored me how effortlessly she was able to cook as well. Yep. One year younger than me, but ten years ahead in the kitchen... I think I've finally caught up - now I can make fried rice too (minus the Sazon)!
This post participates French Friday's with Dorie. Come check out how everyone else fared!
Happy Memorial Day, all!