Rice Bonanza – Part 8

Part 8 sees this ricey trip move in all sorts of directions – there’s no consistency here! Chicken rice features twice, but in totally different ways! Joining in is a crispy tofu and charred snap pea bowl that is one of my favourites so far. And thrown in the middle is one for your nightmares… You’ll see.

Recipe 31 – Chicken and lime rice


Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 400 gr can artichoke hearts, each halved
  • 25 gr unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 leek (white part only), finely chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • Zest and juice of 1 lime, plus extra wedges to serve
  • 2 chicken breast fillets, cut into thin strips
  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 1 ¾ cups chicken stock
  • 2 avocados, sliced


  1. Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook the artichoke heart halves for 2-3 minutes on each side. Set aside.
  2. Melt butter in a large saucepan over low heat. Add the leek, bay leaf and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the leeks soften.
  3. Add the lime zest and chicken and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes or until the chicken is opaque.
  4. Add the rice, stirring well to coat, then add the stock and half the lime juice. Increase heat and bring to the boil, then reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 12 minutes.
  5. Remove from the heat and leave covered for a further 10 minutes.
  6. Season and stir through the artichokes hearts and remaining lemon juice. Serve topped with sliced avocado.

Recipe 32 – Spicy Chicken Ricey


Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • 8 Roma tomatoes, diced into 3 cm pieces
  • ½ eggplant, sliced into 1 cm semicircles
  • 200 gr kent pumpkin, diced into 2 cm pieces
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 2 chicken breast fillets, sliced into 4 pieces each
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon chilli powder
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup tahini
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • Lemon wedges, to serve


  1. Preheat oven to 180C. Coat tomatoes, eggplant and pumpkin in 2 tablespoons oil and season. Place on separate trays and roast, removing tomatoes and eggplant after 30 minutes and pumpkin after 45 minutes (or until darkening and soft). Set aside.
  2. Bring a pot of water to the boil over high heat. Add the rice and boil for 15-17 minutes, or until tender. Drain and set aside.
  3. Combine all spices and coat chicken pieces. Heat remaining oil in large frypan over medium heat. Add chicken and any spices that have fallen off and cook each side for 3 minutes, or until cooked through.
  4. Add rice and vegetables to pan with chicken. Stir though, mashing the pumpkin a little as you go.
  5. Combine tahini, lemon juice and oil in a small bowl and whisk until just combined (if you whisk too much it will begin to separate again). Pour over rice mixture and stir to combine. Serve with lemon wedges.

Recipe 33 – Rainbow stargazer rice


Each week, I generally grab a “catch of the week” fish for an easy weeknight meal. It’s always a pair of white fish fillets, like barramundi or dory (not Dory). When stargazer landed in my kitchen, I thought that was a pretty cool name for a fish! I cooked it up, fried for about 4 minutes a side, and found that it kept a real firmness, almost bouncy to the touch. It sliced very nicely and made a great choice of fish for this rainbow rice. It was delicious and I was happy about it. Until I looked the damn fish up… Of course, I’ve saved you the trouble and there’s a surprise for you at the end of this here post… Enjoy.

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 bunch basil, leaves picked
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  • 2 stargazer fillets
  • ½ cup diced green beans
  • ½ cup diced carrots
  • ½ cup diced spring onions
  • ½ cup diced capsicum
  • ½ cup diced purple cabbage
  • ½ cup corn kernels
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha
  • ½ cup chopped snow peas
  • ½ cup chopped pea shoots
  • 1 long red chilli, sliced


  1. Bring a pot of water to the boil over high heat. Add the rice and boil for 10-12 minutes, or until just tender. Drain, run under cold water, then set aside.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Add eggs and swirl to form a large omelette. Cook for 2-3 minutes, then flip and cook for 1 minute more. Remove from heat, shred cooked egg, and set aside.
  3. Coat basil leaves lightly with a teaspoon of oil. Add to the pan and cook, tossing occasionally, until they crisp up. Remove from heat and set aside on paper towel.
  4. Dust stargazer fillets with coriander powder. Heat remaining oil in pan over medium heat. Add fish and cook for 4 minutes on each side, or until cooked through. Set aside and slice thinly when cool enough.
  5. Add beans, carrots and onions to the pan and cook, tossing, for 3 minutes. Add capsicum, cabbage and corn and cook, tossing, for 1 minute. Return egg and fish to the pan. Combine all sauces and mix through until everything is heated.
  6. Divide rainbow fish rice into bowls and top with snow peas, pea shoots, sliced chilli and crispy basil.


I warned you.

Recipe 34 – Crispy tofu and charred snap peas


Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 350 gr firm tofu, cut into 3 cm pieces
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • ¼ cup roasted unsalted peanuts, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons kecap manis
  • 1 long red chilli, seeds removed, thinly sliced, plus extra to serve
  • 200 gr snap peas
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 4 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • Juice of 1/2 lime, plus lime wedges to serve


  1. Bring a pot of water to the boil over high heat. Add rice and cook for 15-17 minutes, or until tender. Drain and set aside.
  2. Heat peanut oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Pat the tofu dry with paper towel and transfer to pan. Cook for 8 minutes, tossing occasionally, until golden and crisp. Transfer to a bowl and toss through peanuts and kecap manis.
  3. Wipe frypan and return to high heat. Cook snap peas, tossing occasionally, for 2-3 minutes until charred and blistering. Remove from frypan and set aside.
  4. Reduce heat to medium and ass sesame oil. Add cooked rice and allow it to cook without stirring for 2 minutes. Add spring onions, chilli, soy sauce, fish sauce and lime juice. Toss everything together and cook for 1 minute.
  5. Divide rice among bowls and top with tofu mix and snap peas. Serve with extra lime wedges.

Rice Bonanza – Part 7

More rice recipes are on the table in Part 7 of Rice Bonanza. This time around, a coconut risotto that’s as creamy as they come, a ricey take on meatloaf that still packs the bacon, a coconut rice that’s an Asian staple and a mixed-grain vege-stash that’s packed full of… everything.

Recipe 27 – Prawn and coconut milk risotto


Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 2 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 eschalots, chopped
  • 400 gr green prawns, peeled and roughly chopped
  • ¾ cup dry white wine
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • Coriander leaves, to serve
Coriander pesto
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ¼ cup toasted macadamias
  • ¼ cup parmesan, broken into small pieces
  • 1 cup coriander leaves
  • ¼ cup macadamia oil


  1. To make the pesto, place garlic, macadamias and parmesan into a blender and pulse into a crumb. Add coriander leaves and pulse to combine. Slowly add the oil, a bit at a time, blending until thick and well combined. Set aside.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon coconut oil in a deep saucepan over a medium heat. Add garlic and eschalots and cook for 5 minutes. Add prawns and ¼ cup wine to the saucepan and cook for 3 minutes, tossing a couple of times to flip prawns. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  3. Heat remaining oil in saucepan. Add onion and cook for 5 minutes. Add rice and toss for 30 seconds until well coated in oil. Add the remaining wine and cook to absorb. When almost absorbed, add 1 cup of stock. Repeat with remaining stock as the rice absorbs, until the rice is creamy and almost tender. Add the coconut milk and cook for 1 minute. Return prawn mix and stir to combine and heat through.
  4. Serve risotto in bowls and top with coriander pesto and leaves.

Recipe 28 – Rice loaf



  • 1 ½ cup brown rice
  • 400 gr baby spinach leaves, chopped
  • 6 slices shortcut bacon, diced
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup milk
  • ¾ cup cheddar, grated
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon thyme, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon oregano, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon rosemary, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Brown onion, finely chopped
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs


  1. Rinse rice until water runs clear. Cook rice as per packet instructions. Set aside.
  2. Fry bacon pieces in hot fry pan until browned.
  3. Blanch the spinach leaves in boiling water for 1 minute. Allow to cool and press out any excess liquid.
  4. Combine all ingredients except breadcrumbs.
  5. Grease and line a 20 cm x 10 cm (or approx.) loaf tin. Preheat oven to 180C. Pour mixture into tin and top with breadcrumbs. Bake for 50 minutes. Remove from oven and rest for 5 minutes before turning out of tin and slicing.

Recipe 29 – Fish with coconut rice


Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • ¾ cup jasmine rice
  • ½ cup coconut milk
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves
  • ½ cup coriander leaves, plus extra to serve
  • Grated zest of 1 lime, plus lime wedges to serve
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 long red chilli, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup shredded coconut, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 fillets barramundi
  • Plain flour, to dust
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce


  1. Place the rice, coconut milk, 2 kaffir lime leaves and ½ cup cold water in a saucepan and bring to the boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, for 10-15 minutes until the liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. Remove from heat, fluff with a fork and set aside.
  2. Finely shred the remaining kaffir lime leaf and put in a bowl. Add the coriander, lime zest, garlic chilli and coconut, and toss to combine.
  3. Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Dust fish with flour, shaking off excess, then fry for 3 minutes each side, or until cooked through. Drizzle over fish and soy sauces.
  4. Divide rice onto plates, discarding lime leaves. Top with fish and scatter coriander/coconut mixture over the top. Serve with extra coriander leaves and lime wedges.

Recipe 30 – Mixed grain vege-stash


This is my go-to for using mixed grain rice, a rice combo incorporating grains, split peas and black beans, which is available in Asian grocers. Often you won’t find cooking instructions, so it may be trial and error to get it right. Soaking overnight helps, but 15 minutes in equal parts water to rice mix (adding a little as you go until tender) should do the trick. Alternatively, use the boiling option in the recipe below and drain things off when done.

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • ¼ kent pumpkin, diced into 2 cm pieces
  • 2 large carrots, cut into 3 cm pieces
  • 1 cup mixed grain rice
  • ¼ cup mixed pepitas and sunflower kernels
  • 1 long red chilli, sliced
  • Handful of basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • Lemon, for dressing


  1. Preheat oven to 180C. Coat pumpkin and carrot pieces in oil and place on a tray. Season. Roast for 40 minutes, or until soft and browning. Remove from oven and set aside.
  2. Place mixed grain rice in saucepan of water. Bring to the boil, then reduce to simmer and cover to cook for 15 minutes, or until tender. Drain, then return saucepan to low heat. Stir through pumpkin, carrots, pepitas, sunflower kernels, chilli and basil. Dress with lemon juice and season.