Arroz Amarillo con Achiote (Yellow Rice with Annatto Oil)
Either turmeric, annatto or saffron gives yellow rice its distinctive color. Turmeric is used in Southeast Asia, annatto is popular in Latin America and the Caribbean while saffron is added in South Asian, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cooking.In this recipe, annatto seeds are heated gently in oil to render color. The seeds are discarded and spices are sauteed in the colored oil before vegetables, rice and broth are added.
- Pour the oil into a shallow pan (a wok is a good choice) and sprinkle in the annatto seeds.
- Over low heat, allow the annatto seeds to render color.
- Scoop out the annatto seeds and discard.
- Set the heat to medium, add the garlic and onion to the oil, and cook gently until slightly softened.
- Add the carrot cubes and peas.
- Add the rice. Stir to coat each grain of rice with the oil. Cook for a few minutes.
- Transfer the rice mixture to the rice cooker (see notes after the recipe). Pour in the broth. Taste; add salt and pepper, as needed.
- Turn on the rice cooker and cook the rice, as usual.
- When the rice is done, leave for a few minutes in the cooker then fluff up the grains using a fork.
- Serve the arroz amarillo con achiote hot. It is great by itself or with anything and everything — meat, vegetables, seafood.
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For convenience, the sauteed rice and vegetables were transferred to the rice cooker. You don’t have to. You can cook arroz amarillo con achiote in a frying pan or wok from start to finish.
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