Trying out a healthier rice

A variety of colorful vegetables is ready to be mixed with black rice. Michele Howard photos

Michele Howard
Special to the Village News

I’m not sure why, but my brain works overtime when thinking of new ideas for a tantalizing dish to create. For a week, I kept thinking of the black rice I bought and what I could make with it. It looks exotic, and has a great nutty flavor.

I questioned myself over and over about what flavor do I want, Mexican, Indian, Italian? So I went with a Thai curry sauce. I believe if I substitute green enchilada sauce for the curry sauce and replace sweet potato with mushrooms it would be a hit. The dish tastes delicious without curry sauce too. Eat on my friends, healthier rice!

​Black Rice Confetti with Shrimp

Black rice – prepare in rice cooker – see instructions below.

  • 1/4 cup red bell pepper, chopped small
  • 1/4 cup zucchini, chopped small
  • 1/4 cup yellow squash, chopped small
  • 1/4 cup white onion, chopped small
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces, boil, drain, set aside
  • 5 pineapple rings, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 – 11oz. jar Trader Joe’s Thai Red Curry Sauce
  • 20 large shrimp sautéed in peanut oil until pink- do not over cook.
  • 1 Tablespoon peanut oil

Toasted coconut for garnish

  1. Cook black rice in rice cooker: 1 1/2 scoops​ (scoop provided with cooker) and fill water line up to 1 3/4. You can use vegetable or chicken broth, but when creating this recipe I used water, less sodium. K​eep the lid on after ​rice has ​cooked to keep warm​, but pull plug to turn off cooker.​
  2. Peel off sweet potato skin, chop into 1/2 inch cubes and boil in water until soft, drain and set aside.
  3. ​S​auté bell pepper, zucchini, squash and onion in large pan medium high heat with peanut oil until al dente, then stir in sweet potato and pineapple.
  4. Stir in Thai Red Curry sauce, add rice, stir well on low heat.
  5. Up to this point a vegan meal – to add shrimp see next step.

Shrimp prep:

In a large pan on medium high heat add 1 tablespoon peanut oil and large raw shrimp. Cook shrimp both sides about 2-3 minutes until opaque in color.

Serve shrimp over rice confetti. Makes about 6 cups of confetti rice.​ Place 1 1/2 cups rice confetti and ​5 shrimp on each plate or bowl. Serves 4

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