Wild Rice Stuffing

Being the day after Valentine’s Day and a couple months away from Easter, we’ve got a lot of holiday cooking which sticks out.  It’s still winter, and so I am still thinking a little bit about some of my favorite winter holiday recipes.  Although this recipe was first found in a Cooking Light magazine at Thanksgiving time a few years ago, it has become one of my favorite rice side dishes.  It is often a more fall/harvest-inspired recipe, but that wouldn’t stop me from making it at just about any time of the year.  Sometimes it’s nice to have a side dish that isn’t potoato-based.  In those days, wild rice pilaf is a nice addition.  It doesn’t hurt that like me, wild rice is a major crop in Minnesota.

I’ve also brought this recipe for potluck meals. Cooking it the night before, I’ve reheated it the next day in the crockpot with an additional cup or two of chicken stock.

Also, instead of separate wild rice and brown rice, I generally use Uncle Ben’s long grain rice & wild rice blend and cook that separate while sautéing the celery, onion, garlic, etc.

Wild Rice Stuffing

Cooking spray

1 1/2 cups chopped celery

1 cup chopped onion

1 cup uncooked wild rice

2 garlic cloves, minced

4 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage

1 cup uncooked long-grain brown rice

1/2 cup dried sweet cherries

1/2 cup chopped dried apricots

1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add celery, onion, wild rice, and garlic to pan; sauté 3 minutes. Stir in broth and sage; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes. Stir in brown rice, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and cook for 30 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat; let stand, covered, 10 minutes. Stir in cherries and remaining ingredients.