This Simple Butter Cilantro Rice is anything but boring and makes a flavorful side dish for Cinco de Mayo or any weeknight meal!
I am always on the look out for simple side dishes. I have roasted every vegetable known to man, cooked potatoes a thousand ways to Sunday and made every boxed pasta, rice and noodle dish in my grocery store. But there is just something about a simple bowl of rice that is comforting and homey. With butter and one grocery store ingredient, you can make a flavorful rice dish that will be welcome addition to your recipe rotation!
Simple Butter Cilantro Rice Recipe
Basic long grain rice gets amped up with butter (you can never go wrong with butter) and the addition of recaito. Recaito – it may be called sofrito even though there are no tomatoes or culantro cooking base – is a puree of green peppers, onions, garlic, culantro, peppers and spices. It is a flavorful blend that can be added to soups, stews, salsas, marinades, chicken dishes and rice. There are a ton of recipes on the web to make homemade recaito or you can find it in the Hispanic/Latin area of your grocery store. (This is the brand of recaito I buy. aff link)
If you look closely, you can see the spices and bits of garlic and onion that give this rice tons of flavor with very little effort! That is no-fuss food if I’ve ever seen it 🙂
Sweet readers: I am not Latin cuisine expert. So, if you are wondering like I was, culantro is not the same as cilantro. Culantro is an entirely different herb and part of the recaito cooking base. I really like the fresh flavor of cilantro, so I also serve fresh cilantro to sprinkle on top of this rice. Since Culantro Cilantro Rice sounded silly, I went with the simpler title of Butter Cilantro Rice.
My friend, Maria, who so kindly sends me rice con gandules & salchichas and homemade meat stuffed potato balls, gave me a jar of this culantro cooking base. I thought it sounded like a great way to flavor rice and here we are 🙂
So, whatever you call it, just call it delicious!
This Butter Cilantro Rice is a meal time work horse:
- Add shredded chicken or roasted pork to the rice to make it a main course dish
- Spoon it into burritos
- Top it with cheese and fresh salsa
- Add some black beans and bake it the oven
- Or just add a little more butter and eat it plain!
- 1 1/2 cups water or chicken stock
- 1/2 cup recaito culantro cooking base see notes
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup long grain rice (not instant rice)
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Fresh cilantro for garnish
- In a medium sauce pan, bring water (or stock) to a boil.
- Reduce heat to low and stir in rice, recaito culantro cooking base, butter and salt/pepper.
- Simmer for about 20 minutes or until the water is absorbed.
- Fluff rice with a fork and spoon into serving bowl.
- Garnish with fresh cilantro.
*I found the green recaito culantro cooking base in the Hispanic/Latin section of my grocery store.