Rice is cooked in freshly squeezed orange juice and vegetable broth and coupled with sautéed onion, garlic and chili in this savory citrus pilaf. Cajun spiced chickpeas, toasted almonds, baby peas and raisins are sprinkled throughout the rice, before it’s all finished off with a pinch of paprika. This recipe comes to us from Trudy of veggie.num.num.
- 10 ounces chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- a little vegetable oil, for preparing the chickpeas and pot
- 3 teaspoons low sodium Cajun seasoning*
- 1 teaspoon powdered vegetable stock**
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, diced
- 1 red chili, diced
- 2 cups long grain rice
- 3 oranges
- 3½ cups low sodium vegetable stock
- ¼ cup almonds, slivered
- ¼ cup raisins
- 1 cup frozen baby peas, thawed
- a few pinches paprika, for garnish**
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt, for garnish**
*Low sodium Cajun spice mix is sold in the spice section of most grocery stores, but if time allows, we suggest making your own.
Mix the chickpeas with a little vegetable oil, the Cajun seasoning blend and the vegetable stock powder, if using.
Place the coated chickpeas in a small frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the vegetables become fragrant. Remove from heat and set aside.
Grate the rind from 2 of the oranges and juice all 3. Set the rind and juice aside.
Pour a little vegetable oil in a large pot over medium heat. Cook the diced onion, garlic and chili over a medium heat for 4-6 minutes, or until soft. Add the rice and orange rind. Stir to combine all ingredients.
Add the stock and orange juice to the pot, turn heat up to high and bring to the boil. When the stock mixture boils, turn the heat down to low. Simmer covered, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes, or until the stock has been absorbed.
While the rice is cooking, toast the slivered almonds in a frying pan over medium heat for 2-4 minutes, or until golden and toasted.
Add the Cajun chickpeas, raisins, peas and toasted almonds to the rice pilaf. Toss the rice until all ingredients are well combined. Serve the pilaf into 6 bowls, top with a pinch of paprika and a dab of Greek yogurt if using, and enjoy.