Sincerely Carolina

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brown rice and a bit o' spice.

by caroline

Despite the fact that I adore food, flavors and trying new dishes, not every dinner we have in this household can be a dazzling spectacle each time it hits the table. In fact, I am often A-OK with veggies, brown rice and a small piece of grilled fish. It doesn’t always have to be fancy sch-mancy to put a smile on my face.

Still, that doesn’t mean I don’t like to jazz things up every now and then. So, when it came to deciding dinner last night, I decided to put a spin on traditional brown rice and give it a bit of spice.

Dan and I had recently picked up this new kefir cheese that we spotted at the grocery store called Labne, Labne is a “thick and creamy yogurt cheese and a healthier alternative to regular cream cheese,” according to the Website. After tasting it, I also thought it would be a great option in place of typical sour cream, and started imagining it on all kinds of spicy, Mexican-style dishes, like corn tortillas and vegetarian chili.

Enter this Soutwestern-Style Brown Rice dish. The recipe is completely fab on it’s own, but it really gets an extra special kick when you add the Labne. Don’t have access to Labne or want to make this dish vegan? Stick with regular ol’ sour cream or a vegan sour cream alternative.

Southwestern-Style Brown Rice

by The G-Spot

Keywords: boil saute entree side whole grain vegan vegetarian gluten-free

Ingredients

  • 1 bell peppers of choice, diced (I used a red, yellow and orange mixture.)
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 small tomato, chopped
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1-1/2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 2 14.5-ounce cans of beans of choice (black beans, black eyed peas, chickpeas, kidney beans, etc.)
  • top with Labne (kefir cheese), sour cream or vegan sour cream alternative, if desired.

Instructions

Cook brown rice according to package instructions. Set aside.

In a large saute pan, warm oil over medium heat. Add peppers, zucchini, onions, garlic, tomatoes, lemon juice, cumin, cinnamon, chili powder and sea salt, stirring consistently for about 5 minutes.

Add beans and brown rice to the mixture, stirring until ingredients are thoroughly combined. Cook for 5-7 minutes, then remove from heat. Top with Labne (kefir cheese), sour cream or vegan sour cream alternative, if desired.

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As you can see, the rice was still piping hot when I photographed it!

I had mine as my main dish with a side of steamed broccoli, and Dan had his as a side with a piece of grilled chicken and some broccoli. Today, I am wrapping the leftovers up in a Rudi’s Gluten-Free Tortilla and calling it lunch!

Tell me: What’s your quick and easy trick for spicing up a dish?