Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Mediterranean Brown Rice

When I was a young teen, my mother picked a LOT of asparagus and we blanched it and froze it.  We had fresh tasting asparagus all winter long.  I think that's when my love affair with asparagus began.  When I was at the grocery store yesterday, I saw some lovely asparagus.  My mother taught me the skinnier the stalk, the more tender the asparagus.  When the stalks get too thick, the asparagus can be woody.  So, when I ran across a recipe for Mediterranean Brown Rice on Just the Food, I had to try it.
The dish was relatively easy to fix and the ingredient list wasn't overwhelming.  Before I began chopping, I threw some brown rice in my rice cooker.  I washed and cut up my asparagus and some sundried tomatoes.
I sauteed the asparagus, garlic, and sundried tomatoes.  While it was cooking, I cut up the basil, warmed my lemon in the microwave for 20 seconds and cut it in half.
When the asparagus was tender, I added the spinach.  As soon as the spinach was wilted, I added some brown rice, then the lemon, and then the basil.  I dished it up and sprinkled it with freshly ground black pepper and a few pine nuts.

This dish has very fresh flavors.  I like the lemon.  It wasn't overwhelming.  In fact, I think it could have been a much more predominant flavor, so I may add more.  I love basil in anything.  It's my favorite fresh herb, hands down.  I will make this again, but I may add some mushrooms next time and maybe some sauteed tofu.  This is a really nice meal for Spring. :)


  1. That looks and sounds delicious! But of course it would, it's got so many of my favorite things in it! Asparagus, lemon, basil, sundried tomatoes... what's not to love?

    My mother taught me the same thing about buying asparagus, and my husband's mother taught him that too. It must be a universal rule of thumb, so imagine my surprise when I found this on this helpful web site (a favorite produce-info resource of mine)...

    It was thought in the past that thin, so-called pencil asparagus would be more flavorful and tender than fatter asparagus (sometimes mistaken for older asparagus,) when actually the reverse is true. The younger the plant, the greater amount of jumbo asparagus it produces. I have rarely found jumbo asparagus anything but juicy and tender, and usually I think it is more flavorful than the pencil asparagus.

    I was skeptical, but we put it to the test last year and found it to be true! Go figure.

    Thanks for sharing this recipe, it's definitely one we'll enjoy!

  2. I'll definitely have to try the thicker aspargus. It's one of my vary favorite veggies!