Arroz Verde With Spiced Mushrooms

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A spicy herb sauce can transform a perfectly fine dish into something really special. Here a quick cilantro and jalapeño blender sauce makes its way into the recipe at three points: first, flavoring the aromatic base at the start of rice cooking; next, carefully mixed into the rice at the end of cooking to amp up the verdant hue; and finally, stirred into the creamy drizzle sauce to be served alongside. Inspired by irresistible pollo a la brasa, Peruvian rotisserie chicken, this dish uses oyster mushrooms spiced with cumin and paprika as a meaty vegetarian swap. Jasmine rice lends its beautiful fragrance here, but any long white variety will do. The important step is to make sure to rinse whatever rice you use at least a few times to encourage a fluffy, not clumpy, result.

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Ingredients

4 servings

3

limes, divided

2

medium jalapeños, stems removed

5

garlic cloves

2

cups (packed) cilantro leaves with tender stems, plus more for serving

3

tsp. Diamond Crystal or 1½ tsp. Morton kosher salt, divided

½

cup sour cream

2

Tbsp. mayonnaise

cups jasmine or other long-grain rice

6

Tbsp. vegetable oil, divided

tsp. ground cumin, divided

lb. mixed mushrooms (such as oyster, shiitake, maitake, and/or crimini), torn into various sizes

1

tsp. paprika

Freshly ground pepper

Preparation

  1. Step 1

    Cut 1 lime in half; squeeze juice into a blender. Add 2 medium jalapeños, stems removed, 5 garlic cloves, 2 cups (packed) cilantro leaves with tender stems, ½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¼ tsp. Morton kosher salt, and ½ cup water and blend until smooth. Transfer 2 Tbsp. cilantro purée to a small bowl; set aside.

    Step 2

    Place 3 Tbsp. cilantro purée in a medium bowl; finely grate in zest of 1 lime. Cut lime in half; squeeze in juice. Mix in ½ cup sour cream, 2 Tbsp. mayonnaise, and ½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¼ tsp. Morton kosher salt. Cover herb sauce and chill until ready to serve.

    Step 3

    Place 1½ cups jasmine or other long-grain rice in a medium bowl. Pour in cold water to cover and swish vigorously with your hands; drain. Repeat process until water runs clear (3–5 more times).

    Step 4

    Heat 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil in a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium-high. Add rice and ½ tsp. ground cumin and cook, stirring, until rice is coated in oil, about 30 seconds. Add 1½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¾ tsp. Morton kosher salt, remaining cilantro purée in blender, and 2¼ cups water; stir to combine. Bring to a boil. As soon as bubbles appear along sides, reduce heat to low and cover; cook 15 minutes. Remove pot from heat; let rice sit (still covered) 15 minutes.

    Step 5

    Meanwhile, heat 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add ¾ lb. mixed mushrooms (such as oyster, shiitake, maitake, and/or crimini), torn into various sizes, and spread out in a single layer. Cook until golden, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil to pan and cook remaining ¾ lb. mixed mushrooms until nearly golden, about 3 minutes per side.

    Step 6

    Return all mushrooms to pan; reduce heat to low. Scoot mushrooms to one side and add remaining 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil, then 1 tsp. paprika, remaining 1 tsp. ground cumin, and ½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¼ tsp. Morton kosher salt to empty side of skillet; season with freshly ground pepper. Give spices a quick stir to combine, then toss mushrooms to coat in spiced oil. Remove from heat.

    Step 7

    Cut remaining 1 lime into wedges. Gently mix reserved 2 Tbsp. cilantro purée into rice with a fork; fluff rice. Transfer to a platter and top with mushrooms. Drizzle some reserved herb sauce over (if it has thickened, stir in 1 Tbsp. cold water to loosen) and top with cilantro leaves with tender stems. Serve with lime wedges and remaining sauce.

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Author: Hana Asbrink

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