Prasoryzo (Greek Leek Pilaf)

This is my take on the traditional Greek rice dish, Prasoryzo (pronounced: prah-SOH-ree-zoh). It’s simple and fresh, with rice, leeks, dill, and lemon. It’s (probably) authentically made with long grain white rice, but I really like the added fragrant brown basmati here. If you substitute brown basmati with a different rice variety, be sure to adjust the cooking time.

Prasoryzo (Leek Pilaf)

Prasoryzo (Greek Leek Pilaf)

1/4 cup (60mL) medium or robust extra-virgin olive oil
3 leeks, cleaned well and thinly sliced (just the white and light green sections)
3 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and fresh ground pepper
1 cup (240mL) brown basmati rice
1 tablespoon (15mL) tomato paste
2 1/2 cups (600mL) water
1/3 cup (80mL) minced fresh mint
1/3 cup (80mL) minced fresh dill
Lemon, for serving

Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the leeks and sauté until they start to soften. Add the garlic and season with salt and pepper. Sauté for an additional 2 minutes, until garlic is fragrant and leeks begin to turn golden. Add the rice and stir until well mixed, then stir in the tomato paste, mixing well.

Add the water, bring to a boil, cover and turn the heat to low, letting simmer until water is absorbed and rice is cooked, about 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the dill and mint. Cover and let sit 15 minutes. Adjust seasonings, and serve with lemon.



Baked Rice Pudding with Bananas, Raisins, and Toasted Almonds

Originally written for a Hallowe’en article (in 2008…and titled “Creamed Maggot Pie with Bug Bits, Phlegm, and Fingernails), this sweet treat is as comforting as it is delicious. Unfortunately, I don’t have a photo on hand.

Baked Rice Pudding with Bananas, Raisins, and Toasted Almonds

2 tablespoons tapioca starch
2/3 cup nondairy milk
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon fine sea or Himalayan salt
3 cups cooked, short-grain brown rice
1 cup banana chunks
1/2 cup raisins
1 tablespoon unrefined cane sugar
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Preheat oven to 400°F . Lightly oil a 9-inch pie dish and set aside.

Whisk together tapioca starch and 2 tablespoons of the nondairy milk until smooth. Whisk in the remaining nondairy milk and the maple syrup. Add the vanilla extract, cinnamon and salt. Mix well. Stir in rice, bananas, and raisins. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the mixture into prepared pie dish. Sprinkle with the sugar.

Bake for 17 to 20 minutes, until bubbly. Let cool about 30 minutes. Top with sliced almonds. Serve with extra nondairy milk, coconut milk iced cream, or pure maple syrup, if desired.