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Brown rice with beets, leeks & maitake mushrooms: perfect side for Thanksgiving

Over the weekend I made Mixed Greens with Green Apples, Beets, and Pistachios from a Vegan Holiday Kitchen cookbook I received for a review.  

What I liked most about the salad, was the combination of beets, toasted pistachios and cranberries. I decided to use the same ingredients, but in a side dish: this Brown Rice with Beets, Leeks & Maitake Mushrooms would be great for anyone who is vegan or vegetarian, or for someone who is trying to cut down on meat consumption. I also think it'd be a great dish for your Thanksgiving table.

Quick THANK YOU to Philly Homegrown: a while back I received a fun assortment of food made in Philadelphia. For this recipe I used dried maitake mushrooms from The Mushroom Cap.

1 ounce dried maitake mushrooms (~1.5 cups)
1.5 cups boiling water
3/4 cups brown rice
2 teaspoon olive oil
1 leek: white part only, thinly sliced
1 red chile, thinly sliced {Thanks, Danielle!}
2 beets, roasted at 400 for 45-90 minutes, cooled, peeled, cubed
1/4 cup cranberries
1/4 cup shelled pistachios, toasted and chopped
salt & pepper to taste

1. Cover the dry mushrooms with boiling water for about 10 minutes. Remove the mushrooms and save the liquid
2. Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a pan, add rice and saute for a few minutes. Add the "mushroom" liquid through a strainer. Season the rice with salt and bring everything to a boil. Lower the heat, cover, and let the rice simmer for about 30 minutes. {Mine might have been the quick cooking brown rice: you might have to cook yours for a longer amount of time}
3. In a separate pan, heat the remaining 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Add leeks and red chile and saute for 5 minutes. Add in the maitake mushrooms and saute for another 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Add cranberries and beets to the leeks, chile and mushrooms and adjust for salt & pepper.
5. Once the rice is cooked, combine it with the vegetables. Serve topped with pistachios.

Would you combine rice with beets? My mom thought it was a strange idea ;) I thought everything tasted great together.


OneTribeGourmet said...

gorgeous dish! love roasted beets in anything! I want this right now! yum!

Belinda @zomppa said...

Gorgeous color! You're right - might have to end up on the Thanksgiving table.

Reem | Simply Reem said...

beautiful looking dish...
Lovely colors and texture....
This sound absolutely delicious...

Shal416 said...

Love the colors in this dish and I can just imagine how incredible it must have tasted. Extra boon-- beets are amazingly good for you!

(Shal) =)

Blake Landau said...

Beautiful soup! There's nothing like a hearty veggie soup on a cold winter day. This one looks very healthy, crisp and refreshing. Plus who wouldn't love a soup with this name 3 sisters. When I think of recipe testers (like you've said you've done) I think of the movie Julia and Julia (before Julia Child gets her book deal for Mastering the Art of French Cooking).

nicole said...

i've never really had beets in anything, but i've had takuan, similar texture? if so, then they most definitely go well in rice!