You know those nights when it’s almost too much effort to cook, and you can summon up the energy to pan fry some chicken breasts or pork chops, but you’re really not enthused about putting a lot of effort into a side dish? Don’t reach for the processed stuff with the artificial flavors and preservatives. This post has you covered. Herbed rice and peas is a simple to prepare side.
To make this side you can cook the rice fresh, or use leftover rice. To make it even simpler, you could even use the plain rice in the pouches…there’s no judging in Lydia’s Flexitarian Kitchen. Besides, you’re tired, right?
The sky’s the limit when it comes to the seasoning. If you’re unsure, a good combination to start with is thyme and/or parsley. Those two herbs add a nice green color and work with just about any food, especially meats. If you’re serving fish, consider adding dill or mint. Basil is a good choice to complement tomatoes and sauces. You could also add your favorite curry powder or cinnamon for a little spice. A little lemon or orange peel will help brighten the flavors, too.
This pin has a nice infographic with some good suggestions for herbs and spices to use. No matter your pick, start with a small amount and add more as needed. With a little experimentation you’ll grow more confident about your choices.
- 2 cups cooked rice (I used basmati)
- 1 cup of frozen peas, steamed
- ½ cup diced onion
- olive oil for sauteing (omit if steam sauteeing)
- 2 - 3 tablespoons of butter or vegan spread
- 1 tablespoon fresh herbs OR 2 teaspoons dried herbs OR 1 teaspoon spice/spice mix (I used a mix of fresh thyme and parsley)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Use a large skillet to saute the onions in a little olive oil while the peas are steaming in the microwave.
- Melt the butter and your choice of herbs and spices in the same skillet.
- Mix in the peas and the rice and stir well to distribute the herbs evenly throughout. Season with salt and pepper.
- Continue to heat until the rice is warmed through.
- Taste and adjust the seasonings before serving.
If you use thin cut chicken breasts or pork chops a meal like this can take about 30 minutes to throw together…even less if you take advantage of leftover meat and prepared rice. Add some fruit or a salad and you have a meal.