Wild and Brown Rice Pilaf With Apples and Pecans
Wild rice, apples, and pecans just seem to belong together. The texture of this autumnal pilaf will invigorate your palate. This makes a great stuffing for squashes or peppers, too.
Serves: 8 or more as a side dish
- 3/4 cup wild rice, rinsed
- 3/4 cup long-grain brown or brown Basmati rice, rinsed
- 2 teaspoons all-purpose seasoning blend (such as Frontier or Mrs. Dash)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large red onion, finely chopped
- 2 large celery stalks, diced
- 2 medium Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and diced
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup orange juice (from 1 large orange)
- 1 tablespoon orange zest if orange is organic, optional
- 2 scallions, green parts only, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup currants or raisins
- Pinch each: cinnamon, nutmeg
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
- 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
Bring 4 cups of water (see variation) to a simmer in a large saucepan. Stir in the wild and brown rice and the seasoned salt, return to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, covered, until the water is absorbed, about 40 minutes.
Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and celery and sauté until the onion is golden. Add the apple and sauté another 5 minutes. Stir in the cooked rice mixture along with the juice, optional zest, scallions, currants, and spices. Season with salt and pepper.
Sauté over low heat, stirring frequently, another 5 minutes. This may be done somewhat ahead of time to this point, then left covered off the heat until needed.
Just before serving, heat through, adding a bit more liquid if the mixture needs it, then stir in the parsley and pecans. Mound in the center of a large serving platter and surround with the stuffed peppers, above.
Variation: To give this even more flavor, use a 32-ounce container of low-sodium vegetable broth in place of water.