Spinach rice may not be a trendy or exotic name for a dish, in fact it sounds a little plain, but believe me, it’s NOT plain at all. It’s super healthy, delicious and quick! Did l mention that’s it’s a vegetarian dish too? Don’t forget to add a squeeze of lemon juice at the end! It will really make all the flavours pop!
I think my photography skills have let me down this time around. Not very happy with how these photos turned out, but l guess everyone has a bad day at the office every now and then.
Which type of spinach should l use?
Silver beet or English spinach are the varieties l use for dishes that require baking or cooking on the stove.
I reserve baby spinach for use in salads as it’s more delicate than silver beet or English spinach. In a dish like this one, baby spinach would curl up into little balls and hardly be noticed unless you used A LOT of it.
One more thing about silver beet. It’s known by many common names such as Swiss chard, chard, perpetual spinach, beet spinach, seakale beet or leaf beet.
So no matter where in the world you are, l hope I’ve got you covered.
Preparation Time: 10 mins Cooking Time: 25 mins Serves: 4
- 300 g/10.5 oz medium grain rice
- 1 bunch silver beet/English spinach, washed, stemmed and chopped (see photos and note 1)
- 350 ml/12 fl oz hot water
- 50 g/2 oz unsalted butter
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, grated
- 1/2 cup spring onions/scallions, finely sliced
- 2 tbsp dill, chopped
- 1 tsp salt, 1/2 pepper
- Optional: 50 g/2 oz fetta, juice of 1/2 lemon
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over moderate low heat. Add the chopped onion, spring onions/scallions and 1/2 the dill. Saute until soft and golden.
- Add the garlic and saute for a further 30 secs – 1 min.
- Turn the heat up to moderate high. Add the chopped spinach and cook, stirring for 1 minute, until it begins to wilt. It doesn’t need to totally collapse, slightly wilted is fine.
- Add the rice, 350 ml/12 fl oz hot water, salt and pepper. Stir. Bring to the boil. Then turn down the heat to very low. Cover with a tight fitting lid. Cook for 23 – 25 mins (note 2).
- Remove from the stove. Use a large fork to fluff up the rice. Transfer to a serving dish.
- Finish off by sprinkling the remainder of the dill and fetta cheese on top. A squeeze of lemon juice will really make all these flavours pop!
- Wash the spinach thoroughly as dirt often gets trapped in the stalks. Shake off excess water and pat dry. Cut off the stems and slice the remainder of the spinach at intervals of 2 cm/3/4 ” (see above photos).
- My saucepans have transparent lids which helps me determine when a dish is ready or not. When l cook rice, l look for little craters that form on the surface. If you don’t see lots of little craters, then your rice isn’t ready.