Saturday, July 12, 2008

Mexican Rice Casserole

I was in a quandry last week over what to cook for our house guests, and had a lot of leftover bits and pieces in the fridge from our last few nights of dinners... in particular, I had about 3 cups of wild rice, 10 button mushrooms and random salad fixings.

to the rescue! I had heard of rice casseroles, so I went searching.

You must know by now that I'm crazy about mexican food, so this mexican rice casserole called to me from the beginning. There were a few other cheese rice casseroles, or green chili casseroles, but when I read the reviews for this one, I was sold. 4.5 stars is a pretty darn good rating, and I'll be giving it 5 when I remember my login/password.

The winning qualities of this recipe:
1. Easy
2. Can use up leftover veggies in fridge
3. Uses up leftover rice
4. Delicious
5. Very forgiving recipe with substitutions
6. Easy
7. Easy
8. Easy

Along with the casserole, my cousin whipped up a salad with more leftovers and we had our complete meal. Thanks Skye!!

Mexican Rice Casserole
adapted from Allrecipes

2 cups cooked rice (I used wild rice, but the original recipe calls for brown - use whatever you like!)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/3 cup diced yellow onion
1 medium red pepper, diced
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
1/2 teaspoon cumin
salt to taste
ground cayenne pepper to taste (I used 1.5 teaspoons)
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained
1 (4 ounce) can diced green chile peppers, mostly drained
2 cups shredded cheese (I used a cheddar/emmentaler mix, but the original recipe calls for Swiss. Again, use what you have or like)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a large casserole dish.

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, and cook the onion until tender. Mix in the bell pepper, and mushrooms. Season with cumin, salt, and ground cayenne pepper. Cook and stir approximately 3-5 minutes, until everything is well mixed and heated through.

In large bowl, mix the cooked rice, onion, bell pepper, mushrooms, beans, chiles, and 1/2 the cheese.

Transfer to the prepared casserole dish, and sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Cover casserole loosely with foil, and bake 30 minutes in the preheated oven. Uncover, and continue baking 10 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Want to see the original recipe? Click here.

* I apologize for the lack of photos, and will post some as soon as I remake this recipe and our mac computer is back from the shop. We had a hard-drive meltdown recently, and lost all pictures. A vegetarian hausfrau life tip: remember to back-up your hard-drives!

Guten appetit!


Anonymous said...

This was/is delicious. I'm making it for a second time tonight. To increase the nutrients, I added about a half-bag of frozen spinach. Sauteed it first to get all the extra moisture out. Nice way to slip some veggies into my 3 year old! (mama from berkeley, california)

Laura said...

@mama from berkeley,
Spinach is a great idea! I will also try that next time. Guten appetit.