I rediscovered this recipe in one of my files the other day as I was trolling through to make sure I wasn’t saving anything I no longer wanted. I do a clean-out on a regular basis because if I didn’t, there wouldn’t be room for any new recipes in my files. (That’s the problem with being a recipe hoarder; you run out of spaces for all your cookbooks and recipe files.)
I originally discovered this recipe several years ago at my sister-in-law Clare’s house. We were invited to dinner and she served Spanish Rice (arroz) as a side dish. I loved it! She was kind enough to give me the recipe and I enjoyed it on a pretty regular basis until it was lost it in my files.
I’m so glad I found it again. The smell of it simmering on the stove immediately reminded me of all the reasons I kept the recipe in the first place. It’s filled with comforting flavors and has a lovely, savory sauciness in every bite. It has all the qualities of a red sauce, but with the Worcestershire and brown sugar, you get layers of flavor instead of one note throughout. And, of course, with the bacon permeating the dish you get a porky robustness that only bacon provides.
I often make this as a side dish but, I’m not adverse to making it as a meal unto itself for lunch (or even dinner if it’s a lazy Saturday with just me and my husband). It’s the perfect side dish for grilling season instead of the usual chips or beans. Just throw some steak or chicken on the grill and add the Spanish rice and your have a complete meal in less than 45 minutes.
6 slices bacon
1 sm. green pepper, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1-14 oz can chopped tomatoes
1 cup water
3/4 cup long grain rice
1 Tbs. brown sugar
1 Tbs. worcestershire sauce
1 tsp salt
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp pepper
1 cup shredded cheddar
In a large skillet, cook bacon until crisp; crumble and set aside. Drain all but 2 Tbs. bacon fat from the pan. In drippings, cook onions and peppers until tender. Stir in un-drained tomatoes, water, rice, brown sugar, Worcestershire, salt, chili powder, and pepper. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes or until rice is tender. Top with shredded cheese and crumbled bacon. Serve.
Try it for yourself and I’m sure you will love it and add it to your recipe file as well. Just don’t lose it like I did!