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GardenSMART :: Recipe - Gluten-Free Rice Dressing Makes Everyone Happy

Recipe - Gluten-Free Rice Dressing Makes Everyone Happy

By Tommy C. Simmons, an enthusiastic cook
Photo by Tommy C. Simmons

I love to dance, but please don’t picture me as one of those skilled swing dancers you’ve seen at a party or wedding. My husband and I took beginner Cajun dancing lessons three times and the instructor never would let us go on the end-of-session field trip to a real Cajun dance hall in Breaux Bridge, LA. He said we just weren’t ready.

After moving to north Georgia, we danced at the annual Christmas party in our community, but that was just about it until we found a group of friends who also like to dance. Gary and Marilyn Charles organize an every other month dance party at their house. Guests bring foods to share potluck style for each gathering, and Gary and Marilyn provide the entrée, tableware and music. Our group has a fun time and some of us are actually improving our dance moves – or we think we are.

Besides working on dances, like the wobble and cha-cha, I’ve been testing gluten-free recipes, since a couple of the dancers are gluten-intolerant. I like the rice dressing I made for our last session and think it’s tasty enough to grace everyone’s holiday menu. Do try it.

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Yummy tasting Pecan Rice Dressing is cooked on the stovetop, which frees up valuable oven space for holiday cooking.

Home kitchen-tested recipe

Pecan Rice Dressing

Serves 6. Adapted recipe is by Tommy Simmons.

3 tbls. butter
1 cup chopped Vidalia onion
½ cup chopped green or red bell pepper (or a combination)
½ cup chopped celery
1 tbl. minced garlic
2 tsps. Cajun Creole seasoning
1 cup uncooked rice
3 cups beef or vegetable broth
1 cup toasted, coarsely chopped pecans
1 tsp. hot sauce
1 cup broccoli florets, cut into bite-size pieces
½ cup chopped green onions
¼ cup minced parsley

  1. In large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in onion, bell pepper and celery and sauté until vegetables are softened. Add garlic and cook for an additional minute or two.
  2. Sprinkle Cajun Creole seasoning over the vegetables and simmer for 2 minutes to blend the flavors. Remove skillet from heat.
  3. Pour beef or vegetable broth into a large saucepot, bring to a boil and stir in rice, return to a boil, then lower heat to low and stir in seasoned onion, bell pepper, celery and garlic. Cover pot and simmer on low for 15 to 20 minutes or until broth is almost completely absorbed by the rice.
  4. Add toasted pecans, hot sauce and broccoli florets, cover pot and continue cooking over low for 10 minutes or until broccoli is cooked through but still green.
  5. Stir in green onions and parsley. Remove from stove, cover and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.

Testing note: The broccoli is optional and can be omitted if you like a more traditional rice dressing. I sometimes use half brown rice and half white rice in the recipe. Brown rice takes slightly longer to cook and may need a little more broth to cook through. Recipe is easily doubled to serve a crowd. Leftovers can be reheated in a microwave.

 


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