Cucumber, Corn and Tomato Salsa

My co-worker gave me some cucumbers she and her husband had grown in their garden. I wanted to use them right away as they were so fresh. This is a variation on a classic cucumber and tomato salad. I added charred corn for sweetness and smokiness. I also added poblano and jalapeno for spice. 

2 small or 1 medium cucumber, diced
2 ears corn
3 vine tomatoes, diced
1 poblano, diced
1 jalapeno, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tbls apple cider vinegar
2 tbls olive oil
2 tsps dry dill
1 tsp garam masala
2 tsps salt

I wasn't about to turn on the broiler to cook the corn. It's been in the 90's here. Instead, I used the same technique often used to char bell pepper. Put the shucked ears directly over a gas flame on the stovetop. If you don't have a gas stovetop you can broil them or use an outdoor grill. 

The corn will pop and make a bit of a mess on your cooktop, but it's worth it. 

Char the corn evenly all around. Allow to cool and them cut the kernels off the cob. 

Stir together all i…

Optimizing Flavored Rice Mixes.

Those flavored rice packets are on sale all the time. We could buy those same spices and rice separately, but with all the sales on elaborate rice, it's often cheaper just to buy the packet. There are so many possibilities.

You can add any kind of vegetable you want. Meat. Beans. A mixture.

Easy. All in one pot.

Frozen veg add at the beginning of the package directions cooking process. The best part. You don't waste any nutrition. Any juice emitted by the veg into the water is absorbed by the rice.

Lentils are great. They take about 20 minutes to cook and require about 1.25 cups of liquid per 1 cup of lentils. Start lentils and rice at the same time. Adding the appropriate amount of extra of water to the package direcions to hydrate your amount of lentils. Adjust any additions according to how long your rice packet directions specify for cook time.

Add can beans like garbanzo beans in the last five minutes of cooking the rice. Be sure to thoroughly rinse canned beans. As they are packed in salt water.

Add fresh veggie in the last five minutes of cooking your rice.

Cook meat before beginning your rice preparation. When meat is half way done add rice package ingredients to the same pot that contains the partially cooked meat.

Always cooks your rice covered. Rice needs to absorb all the water called for. Without a lid the water will evaporate into steam and your rice will not be done in the time specified. Be sure to monitor the cooking rice carefully. Cover pots of water can boil over easily.

Flavored rice mixes are an easy way to add flavor to your meals without substantial risk or effort. Just cook the product according to the manufacturer's directions integrating any additions at the appropriate time in the cooking process.

A delicious, one pot meal is as easy as adding beans and vegetables to a packet or two of seasoned rice mix.