Posted by Patrick on May 29, 2017
You always hear that you should eat more brown rice instead of white rice, right? Healthy brown rice may have a low price, but sometimes it doesn’t cook up as nice, no matter what device you might decide to use, right?
Well listen up, Rainbow has some advice, it’s easy to use, and not too precise, you can mess with it without a roll of the dice, add ingredients, or excise, you’ll make a nice bowl of rice that will entice, no matter how you slice it. You’ll be so cool they’ll claim you’re on ice.
Here’s how you do it:
Makes 2-4 cups of cooked brown rice.
Set aside 1-2 cups of uncooked brown rice - I prefer short grain, it tends to fluff a little easier, but Basmati and Jasmine are both great substitutes. Don’t heavily season Jasmine rice, it’ll provide it’s own wonderfully floral scent.
Get your largest pot - it’ll need to hold 3-4 QUARTS of water (and the rice). Add 3-4 quarts of water to the pot. You can substitute any amount of broth you’d like, but I don’t recommend using more than 1 quart of broth and 3 quarts of water. A quart is a LOT of broth, don’t use more than that unless you really want to weigh it down. It’ll make it less fluffy. You probably want your rice fluffy. Too much broth will render it heavy and slick.
Start that water on high on your stovetop while you add your seasonings. These are optional:
½ to 1 tablespoons of your preferred oil. You can use less oil if you used broth. You don’t have to use oil. I like a little butter, coconut oil, or toasted sesame oil for flavor.
Salt. I like a dash of sea salt.
Bay leaves, 1-2.
1-2 whole peeled cloves of garlic.
1-2 dried African bird peppers.
A glug of soy sauce and/or fish sauce.
A couple of 1” sprigs of ginger.
Obviously you don’t want to put ALL of those in there at once, but mix in what you’d like! My favorite for Asian-themed dishes is garlic, pepper, fish sauce, and ginger. I’ll use bay leaves, salt, rosemary and thyme for more Western European dishes, or red beans and rice, and straight salt/oil for simple dishes.
Once the water is at a ROLLING boil (roiling), add your rice. Leave the top OPEN and let it boil for 45 minutes on HIGH. You really want that rice to roll around in there to keep it from getting heavy and stuck together. Feel free to stir it from time to time - you don’t have to, but you can. Leaving the top off can make the kitchen a little warmer, but also makes the house smell DELICIOUS.
Do not eat your house. The brown rice will be much better.
Once the 45 minutes are up, turn OFF the stove, and pour the rice and water through a colander. You won’t need the water again, so feel free to pour it down the sink. If you want a little as a keepsake or for other cooking needs (it’ll be starchy and spiced as you spiced the rice, and good for Very Little) you can do that before you pour it out.
IMPORTANT: Once you pour out the rice, put it BACK in the HOT POT, and COVER IT. That’s important. You’ll leave the hot pot full of hot rice on the stove steaming in it’s own goodness for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, pick out your twigs and sprigs of seasonings, toss it with a fork, (this is a good spot to throw a little rice vinegar on there if you want) and enjoy fluffy brown rice!
Posted by Patrick on May 26, 2017
Posted by Patrick on May 22, 2017
We’ve had several people ask about red beans and rice recipes that can be made meatlessly, so in honor of this Meatless Monday, we’re sharing Patrick’s favorite RB&R recipe. You don’t have to call it RB&R if you don’t want to. RB&R sounds like a train-themed R&B radio station.
This recipe calls for a pressure cooker. If you don’t have one, a way to do it on the stovetop is included at the end.
What you’ll need:
Pressure cooker or large pot (at least 6 qt capability)
Large pot (6 qt capacity)
Dry red kidney beans (2 cups for this recipe)
1 large onion, yellow
1 large bell pepper, green
3-4 stalks of celery
2 heads garlic
Toasted sesame oil
Smoked sea salt
5 bay leaves
Vegetable stock or broth, 2 quarts
(You can substitute beer or water for some portion of stock)
Apple Cider Vinegar
2-3 Dried chipotle peppers (whole)
½ bundle green onions
AND/OR ½ small red onion
Veggie sausages (I recommend Field Day chipotle sausages)
Wash and soak your beans for at least an hour before beginning. If you’re not using a pressure cooker, I recommend soaking overnight.
Chop one head of garlic.
Add your beans to your pressure cooker or pot and cover with stock or broth. Add the bay leaves, a couple dashes of the toasted sesame oil, and the chopped garlic. You can add soy sauce here, too. Cook these until they’re done. Your pressure cooker has directions for this (usually 30 minutes on high) or you can find lists online. It usually takes an hour or two on the stovetop, but you want your beans to be NOT ENTIRELY DONE. You want them slightly harder than usual, just a hint of crunch to them, because you’re going to be cooking them again.
While your beans are cooking, chop up the remaining head of garlic, your large onion, your bell pepper and your celery. Save the celery leaves! Chop them up even finer than you have everything else.
Now, add enough toasted sesame oil to coat the bottom of your large pot, and throw all those chopped vegetables in there. Sautee until they’re browned, and then - toss those beans in! Don’t drain them! Cover the beans again with stock, don’t be afraid to put some red wine in there, some beer, or some water to make enough liquid.
Add thyme, any other bay leaves, chipotle peppers, and liquid smoke at this point. Everything except the smoked sea salt and paprika.
Get the seasoning right with some apple cider vinegar as this mixture cooks down. You want it to NEED a little salt right up till serving time, so don’t over-salt!
While this cooks down - it’ll take about an hour - get everything else ready - sautee your sausages, finely chop your red onion or green onion, add those parsley or celery leaves and all your toppings.
Cook up some rice! White rice is easy and traditional, but if you want to do the healthier brown rice, we’re not going to stop you!
When the beans are nice and soft, turn off the heat, give it a good beating up with a spoon to give it that half-mashed feel (that’s according to your tastes). Don’t add smoked paprika and sea salt until it’s time to serve, then top everything with your chopped onions!
I think you’ll like this recipe. The toasted sesame oil gives it a smoky, savory flavor that’s enhanced by chipotles, liquid smoke, smoked sea salt and paprika. That’s a healthy alternative to bacon, ham trimmings, or fatback, and the soy sauce and apple cider vinegar round out that meaty flavor while still keeping it meatless.
Posted by Patrick on May 03, 2017
Greetings, Rainbow shoppers;
Since 1980, Rainbow has been Jackson’s only community owned grocery, and the only store willing to keep unhealthy products off our shelves. We’ve had some trying times, going through bank loans, refinancing, constant flooding, and even Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
But, we’ve always managed to pull through, thanks to the dedicated support of our community. So, we need your help once again.
Times are tough. While we were focused on competition from the Whole Foods Market that opened two and a half miles from our door, other national chain stores were expanding their natural and organic offerings, using their superior buying power to depress prices. This has eaten into our sales at an unsustainable rate.
We appreciate that many of you still shop here, despite the competition. Those of you who do are no doubt cognizant of another issue that we are virtually helpless to deal with: The parking lot. When we set up shop in Fondren, it was not a popular place to be, but since our arrival in 1998, Fondren has become Jackson’s hottest neighborhood. Fondren Public routinely fills the lot by five o’clock, when most of our shoppers are getting off work and coming to buy groceries. While there is usually plenty of parking on Saturdays and Sundays (on Sundays, you can get your membership or shareholder discounts) or before five, we realize that many of you can’t, or don’t want to, shop at those times - it’s your valuable time, after all.
Due to these difficulties, Rainbow has had to cut expenses. We’ve come to a point where that’s not enough - any further cuts will lead to a downward spiral that could cause the end of the cooperative.
We’re not asking you to donate money or make huge changes to your spending habits. If every member spends an extra three dollars on each trip, we will be on the road to a comfortable financial status.
There’s a lot of stuff you can get for three dollars at Rainbow - we’re showcasing those things on our Facebook page, Twitter, and Instagram. Just one addition to your cart will make the difference between a thriving local business, or another derelict building. You’ve already helped make a tremendous difference in Jackson, anchoring this neighborhood and creating a community. It won’t be hard to save the Coop, we just need your help.