Sneaky veg FTW in this one. I snuck half a huge zucchini in this rice and it went unnoticed (or at least un commented on). Win.
I served this the first night with seared salmon, and the second with some pepper steak Quorn and a sprinkle of mushroom powder. Both were delicious, and I could see a swirl of pomegranate molasses or some chopped apricot or golden raisins working well here. Smoked almonds instead of plain slivered would also be fantastic.
I also *almost* added the juice and zest of 1 lemon, but am glad I pulled back from that at the last minute. Lemon would be good, but I apparently missed buttery rice in my life.
gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan
Zucchini Rice Pilaf
1c. basmati rice
1Tbsp. butter (dairy or non; whichever you prefer)
1/2 a big zucchini (you could actually add the whole thing, but I erred on the side of caution)
1 large shallot
2Tbsp. slivered almonds
1Tbsp. snipped chives
2Tbsp. chopped parsley
Neutral oil of choice
Make your rice however you make rice, using the water as the liquid and the butter as the fat. Don’t forget to add salt.
While the rice is working, grate the zucchini, snip the chives and chop the parsley. Add to a large bowl.
Finely slice the shallot and fry in a little oil over medium-low heat until browned. When nicely browned (I had wanted caramelized, but this small a quantity of shallot in only the bare minimum of oil browns rather than caramelizes. Would also be amaze with caramelized onion), push the shallot to the side of your pan and add the capers and a bare drizzle of fat.
Push that to 1/3 of the pan until the capers look like they’ll start jumping any minute.
Add the slivered almonds to the last 1/3 of the pan. Toast. Pull the individual items as they are ready and add to the big bowl.
When the rice is done but still warm, add to the big bowl and stir all vigorously to combine.
Serves 4 as a side