Southwestern Style Rice

SW Rice platedOne day, I’m going to make my own tamales. But for tonight, I needed to make a side dish to go with the tamales I bought. Originally I was going to make a basic Mexican rice. But I decided to amp it up a little and add some beans and corn. I guess this would then make this more of a Southwestern style rice. This recipe makes a full skillet of rice. So a good 8-10 servings. If you need less, you may want to half the ingredients.  Or save the extra and add shredded chicken to it for a chicken and rice dish to eat the next day!


  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 2 cups long grain rice
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (14.5 ounce) diced tomatoes with green chilies
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 can (14.5 ounce) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels, defrosted
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2  teaspoon tumeric
  • fresh cilantro for garnish


Heat canola oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.

SW Rice 1

Add onions and cook for 3-4 minutes.

SW Rice 2

Reduce heat to low and add garlic and rice. Stir constantly to make sure the rice does not burn. Cook for 3 minutes.


Add diced tomatoes with green chilies.  Stir to combine.

SW Rice 5

Add black beans and corn.

SW Rice 6

Add chicken broth.

SW Rice 7

Then add cumin, chili powder, salt and tumeric.

SW Rice 9

Stir to combine. Increase heat back to medium high and bring to a boil.

SW Rice 10

Reduce heat back to low.  Cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes or until rice is done.

SW Rice 11

Garnish with fresh cilantro.

SW Rice pan



French Green Beans with Caramelized Onions and Almonds

French Green BeansSometimes the hardest part of deciding what to  cook for dinner isn’t the main entrée, but actually coming up with a side dish. My go to vegetable side dish is French green beans. They pair nicely with most proteins. And they are fairly quick and easy to cook.


  • 1 pound of French green beans (haricot verts)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/3 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 small red onion cut in half and sliced


  1. Boil water in a saute pan. Add 1 tablespoon salt once water is boiling.French GB2
  2. Meanwhile, prepare an ice bath for the beans. (Large bowl with ice and water.)French GB 1
  3. Carefully add the green beans to boiling water for 1 minute.French GB3
  4. Blanch green beans by removing them from the boiling water and immersing them into the ice bath.French GB4
  5. Clear saute pan of remaining water and wipe down with paper towel.
  6. Bring saute pan back to stove on medium high heat.
  7. Add oil and butter and combine using a wooden spoon.
  8. Once oil and butter begin to ripple, add garlic, red pepper flakes and almond slices and stir.
  9. Next add red onion slices and stir every minute until onions are translucent and caramel in color. French GB7
  10. Strain green beans from ice bath and add to saute pan. Combine beans and onion mixture for 2 to 3 minutes until beans are heated throughout. French GB8