Ready or Not #14: Rice Recipes

I hope that you were able to enjoy the recipes that I shared last posting. I thought that it would be fun to share a few more of my quick and easy, food storage friendly, recipes. I promised recipes with rice this time. My first recipe is another family favorite. After all, what would be the purpose of having recipes that your family doesn’t like?

First, cook up twice the amount of rice that you need to feed your family (you will use it tomorrow). 1 cup of rice to 2 cups of water, add a little salt to the water and boil on medium heat until water is gone (I usually cook three to four cups of rice at a time.)

While you are waiting for the rice to cook, make Rice with Refried Beans. Open one or two cans of refried beans, depending on how many people you are feeding, and warm up in a saucepan. Add just a little bit of water so that it isn’t so thick and season with granulated garlic, chili powder, cayenne pepper, powdered onion, black pepper, salt and cumin (you have to have the cumin – it just isn’t the same without it) to taste. When the rice is done put a good size serving in the bottom of a bowl, put another good size serving of the seasoned refried beans on top of that, top with shredded cheddar cheese, salsa and sour cream. This is a very hearty and healthy meal.

OK. It is the second night and you have all that left over rice. Life is so easy. Just make Refried Rice with Ham. Cube some ham (however much you want) and fry it up in a large frying pan. When it gets good and golden brown on the edges, add a little bit of olive oil and the cold leftover rice. Fry the rice and ham together and season to taste with black pepper. I add just a dab of butter at the end of the cooking process to add a little flavor, but it is not necessary.

Serve up with a side of corn and season the rice and ham with soy sauce. My family requests this one, but remember that it tastes best with day old rice.

If you don’t have any ham, don’t worry, just add a bag of frozen oriental vegetables and have Oriental Vegetables with Refried Rice. I like the oriental vegetable mix because I like the baby corn and snow peas. You can use any frozen vegetable mix you want. The only thing that I would do different from the ham and rice is that I would re-fry the rice up separately from the vegetables so that the vegetables don’t get all smooshed up. Flavor with a little bit of soy sauce.

I like soy sauce – no, I love soy sauce. My favorite is Kikkoman. I buy it by the five gallon bucket for only $35.00 (at least that was what it was the last time I bought it.) Soy sauce is not just for oriental cooking, it is a highly versatile seasoning. Try this recipe for Beef Soup as an example. I think that you will be surprised.

Take a very large pan and brown your stewing beef or beef chunks, add onions at this point and let them start to sweat. Add approximately 16 cups of water (in my pan that fills it ¾ of the pan). You really don’t need to measure, just make it approximate. Add about 1 cup of soy sauce (now you know why I buy it in five-gallon containers).

Add your cut up vegetables: celery, carrots, potatoes and whatever else you want. To make this recipe even faster, less than 10 minutes or about the time that it takes to heat the water, use canned meat and canned vegetables and dried onions.

Flavor your soup with garlic granules and black pepper. I also like to add a touch of cayenne pepper. You can also put in a touch of sage or Italian seasoning. It is all about the taste, just experiment with the flavors you like. If there is too much soy sauce, add a little water. Not flavorful enough? Add more soy sauce.

This recipe becomes a favorite of anyone who tries it. It is one of those “comfort” foods that people always talk about. If you have any leftover rice (of which you won’t) you can add it to the soup. No bouillon cubes here!

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