Thursday, July 31, 2014

Easy Beef and Mushroom Rice

Somewhere in my childhood, most likely on a holiday, this dish appeared in the dining room to rave reviews. And then it disappeared to be resurrected every few years or so. I thought it time to actually write it down with instructions before it is lost.

It is, as the title says, "easy." Nowadays, the dried soup mix has been replaced with canned French onion soup. I made it that way but found it too sweet. Stick with the dried stuff. The mushrooms and thyme are optional, but I highly recommend using both. Don't bother adding salt, the ingredients already have plenty. Do give several grinds of fresh pepper. Sometimes I'll take a tiny clove of garlic, smash it a bit, and place in the center of the dish before cooking. Before serving, I remove it. It just adds a lovely garlicky hint.

This is great alternative to potatoes and a great side for a grilled steak or any cut of beef. Simple to prepare a day ahead and then just re-heat. Sometimes this recipe is called "Stick of Butter Rice."

  • 1 heaping cup uncooked white rice, (not instant), about 1 1/4 cups
  • 1 package dried onion soup mix (I use Lipton)
  • Dried thyme flakes -- about two pinches
  • 1, 10.5 can beef broth
  • 1, 4 oz. can sliced mushrooms, drained, liquid reserved
  • 1 stick butter (1/2 cup) not margarine
  • Pepper to taste
  • Water
In a 9 x 9 baking dish (or similar) combine the raw rice, dried onion soup mix, thyme flakes and several grinds of black pepper. Mix in the mushrooms. Slice the butter into pieces and randomly place on top of rice mixture. Add the beef broth. Add the mushroom juice to the now-empty can and then finish filling to the top with water. Add to rice/broth mixture. Cover (tin foil is fine, just make sure it's secure) and bake in 350 F-degree oven for about 40-50 minutes. The last 15 minutes or so, uncover, stir, and  allow some of the liquid to cook away.  Allow to rest 10-15 minutes before serving. If desired, give a sprinkle of fresh-grated Parmesan.

There will be no leftovers. Trust me.

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