Why does it seem like the dishes that are the most simple are the easiest ones to mess up? It took me awhile to really perfect rice. Rice! We would sit down to a fancy dinner where I could nail the soufflé or the baked Alaska….but the rice would either be crunchy, soggy, or bland. Maybe it’s because I grew up on mashed potatoes and didn’t really care about rice until I married my Colombian, who can eat rice for any meal of the day. As I practiced and tweaked and researched how to cook white rice (how boring), I got the texture down, but it was still tasting bland to me. I know rice isn’t known for packing lots of flavor, but I wanted to actually enjoy eating it.
One day we were eating at a local Mexican restaurant, and instead of serving the traditional Spanish rice, they served white rice. I couldn’t believe it! I was looking forward to yummy, flavorful rice and here was this plain Jane white stuff on my plate. I was completely shocked when I took the first bite and a wonderful buttery flavor with a pop of lime flavor overtook my mouth. Could this really be white rice? I knew I had to add these flavors to my rice recipe, and that’s how this perfectly delicious recipe was born. It’s flavorful enough to eat on its own, and subtle enough to mix with other dishes. In a word, it’s perfect.
STEP ONE: Melt Butter and Sauté Rice
In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, melt butter. Add rice, bouillon cube, and garlic and stir until well combined, using a wooden spoon to break up the bouillon cube.
STEP TWO: Bring to a Boil and Simmer
Add salt, water, and lime zest and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 20 minutes without lifting the lid or stirring. Don’t try to check on it or you will mess up the texture. Just let it be.
STEP THREE: Fluff and Flavor
Remove pan from heat, add lime juice, and fluff rice with fork. Enjoy perfect, delicious rice!