Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Pumpkin Not-Really-A-Recipe-Recipes - Pumpkin & Brown Rice Bake

A lot of the cooking I do isn't really recipes, more of a hurling things together & seeing what happens way of cooking. MikeyFox isn't happy cooking unless he has a recipe book (preferably with pictures) and all his ingredients chopped up in little bowls. Feh, each to their own.
So this is something I chucked together a few days ago.

Have you tried brown rice? It's delicious, chewy, nutty & also good for you (which has been compensated for here with the addition of cheese), though takes longer to cook than regular old white rice (which you can use in the recipe instead, maybe even with a bit of wild rice too if you're feeling fancy). There are lots of ways of cooking rice, but I tend to use the absorption method, which is easier than the name suggests (1 cup brown rice, 2 cups vegetable stock or water, bring to the boil & simmer, covered, for 25-30 minutes. Remove from heat & leave to stand, still covered, for 5 minutes until the liquid is absorbed. Unless you're using the quick-cook stuff, which is, y'know, quicker)

Pumpkin & Brown Rice Bake

175g/1 cup dry brown rice (boil it, steam it, cook it some way or other)
200g-400g (or more, or less, depending on how much pumpkin you're in the mood for) Pumpkin or Squash
1 tbs oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
200g mushrooms (I used chestnut, but any kind you like will do)
200g/1 cup green peas (or sweetcorn)
220ml/1 cup milk
2 tbs water
1 tbs sauce flour (or 1 tbs each of flour & butter or oil, and make a roux. What's a roux? It's fat melted in a pan, with an equal amount of flour whisked in, then liquid is slowly added to make a rich, creamy white sauce that when I make it always goes oily & lumpy)
25g really nice cheese (I used emmental, which was really nice, but cheddar, blue, goats cheese, anything that you think will go well with your pumpkin will work), with an extra little bit for scattering over the top.

Preheat oven to 220C/425F/G7
In a pan, fry the onion in the oil until softened. Add the garlic & bat it about for a minute or two. Add the pumpkin & mushrooms & poke occasionally for 10 minutes. While that's cooking, make a cheese sauce. My really lazy cheese sauce goes like this
In a pan, mix 1 tbs sauce flour* with a couple of tablespoons of water to make a paste. Gradually add the milk and put on a medium heat, stirring constantly while it comes to the boil & simmer for 3 or 4 minutes. Stir in the cheese, add pepper & a pinch of salt, maybe even some mustard if you're in the mood & put to one side
Back to the pumpkins! Add your peas & cooked brown rice, and stir. Add the cheese sauce & mix thoroughly. Pour into an oven dish & top with more cheese.
Bake in the oven for 20-30 minutes, or until it's started to go brown & crusty on the top.

Om nom nom!

*A reeeeally fine white flour that can be used to make really easy fat free sauces. Then you add a honking great load of cheese to the mix, heheh!

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