A simple Thanksgiving rice pilaf recipe made with nutty wild rice, sweet and tangy cranberries, leeks and fresh herbs. A lovely festive side dish worthy of the holiday dinner but easy enough for any day of the week.
Wild rice and cranberries go together like peanut butter and jelly you guys. They just have a thing for each other especially this time of the year.
What Is Rice Pilaf:
A delicious rice dish that involves sauteeing your veggies and rice in a little bit of fat like olive oil or vegan butter then finish cooking it in a flavorful veggie broth.
How to Make It:
You sautée flavorful leeks until they release all their sugars and start to caramelize then cook them together with carrots, nutty wild rice, cranberries and herbs in a savory veggie stock. Fluff it up and serve as a side dish or a main course.
What to Serve With:
Have leftovers ? Toss them together with some steamed broccoli florets in a casserole topped with plant-based cheese and bake away.
Thanksgiving Wild Rice Pilaf
- 1.5 cups wild rice blend
- 1 small leek (chopped and rinse well)
- 1 bell pepper -diced
- 1 carrot -grated
- 1/3 cup vegan white wine
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries -for garnish
- 3 cups low sodium vegetable stock or water
- 2 leaves bay
- 1 sprig rosemary
- 1 sprig sage
- 8 sprigs fresh thyme
- 3 sprigs fresh oregano
- 1 tbsp dried oregano
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes or to taste
- 1 splash water (or 2 tsp olive oil)
- Heat up a large deep skillet or pot over medium low flame. Add a splash of water (or a drizzle of olive oil) and the chopped leeks. Sautee with a pinch of sea salt until translucent.
- Stir in the grated carrot, thyme, oregano, sage, rosemary, bay leaves and red pepper flakes. Add the wild rice mix and stir well to combine. Allow it to toast together with the aromatics for a couple of minute.
- Add in the chopped bell pepper and one cup of the cranberries. Pour in the wine and simmer until reduced by half then add the vegetable stock (or water). Stir and taste for seasonings. Add more sea salt to your taste if desired.
- Bring the rice to a simmer, cover with a tight lid and cook on low flame for 50 minutes.
- Turn off the flame but do not remove the lid. Allow the rice to sit covered for 10 to 15 minutes and continue cooking in its own steam.
- Discard the bay leaves and the woody sprigs from the herbs. Use a fork and gently fluff up the rice.
- Serve warm or cold garnished with the remaining cranberries and fresh herbs.