My husband loves rice and asks for it a lot and when we have Mexican-style meals, he still asks for some rice. So, I started looking for some good rice recipes to go with our tacos and fajitas that tasted more flavorful than just rice with tomato sauce. Some of the recipes I tried just didn't do for us-until I looked in my Joy of Cooking cookbook and found it's recipe for Spanish Rice. It was right under my nose the whole time! The last few times I've made this, we just had beans, with the rice, topped with sour cream, lettuce, and cheese, along with a few tortilla chips. Really good and filling.
1 tablespoon oil
2 slices bacon, minced
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup white rice*
1 3/4 cup chicken broth
1 cup chopped drained canned tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon sweet or hot paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a 10-inch ovenproof skillet or flameproof casserole, heat the oil, and add the bacon, onion, and bell pepper, until onions are golden, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic the last minutes or so. Add the rice, stirring to coat it with the vegetables and oil for another minute. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. Stir once, cover, transfer to the oven, and bake until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender, about 25 minutes. Uncover and let stand 5 minutes before serving.
*For brown rice, add the juice from the tomatoes and leave in the oven about 45 minutes or until the rice is done. You may have to add more liquid (water or broth), so check it after about 30 minutes to see if the rice has absorbed the liquid but isn't tender yet.