This recipe is hardly new though. I recall vividly the first time I tasted it, at my friend Noelle's house when I was in grade school. Noelle's dad is a true gourmet, and when he made this rice dish for us, I was hooked.
I had forgotten about the recipe until I recently ran across an old recipe box in a dark recess of my kitchen. Remember recipe boxes? I haven't used mine in many years, so when I found Noelle's dad's recipe for Green Chili Rice, I was thrilled.
The original recipe called for a stick of butter, lots of full-fat sour cream and cheese and the like. It also used white rice. I replaced the butter with a mere 2 teaspoons of olive oil (the butter *really* wasn't necessary with all the cheese) and the full-fat cottage cheese, sour cream, and cheddar cheese with lightened versions.
I wasn't sure what all my changes would do to the taste, but let me tell you, I was transported back to the 5th grade as soon as I tasted this dish. Maybe I need to find my old Swatch Watch and neon telephone cord belt and really get into the 5th grade mind set.
Green Chili Rice
(works great as an easy side dish, but also a good main dish when paired with a salad or soup)
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups cooked brown rice
1 cup lightened sour cream
1 cup lightened cottage cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
a pinch of ground pepper
2 - 4 oz cans of diced green chili peppers
1/3 cup reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes, or until the onion is translucent.
While the onion and garlic are cooking, in a medium bowl mix the rice, sour cream, cottage cheese, salt, pepper and green chilis. Add the onion and garlic once cooked.
Pour into a 9x9 glass baking dish. Sprinkle cheddar cheese on top.
Bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly and the cheese begins to brown a bit.
(see the side dish there, next to those *amazing* vegetarian enchiladas (recipe next week)? That is the green chili rice. Yum.)