Cook's Hideout: Mexican Green Rice (Arroz Verde)

August 03, 2012

Mexican Green Rice (Arroz Verde)

Here I am for another edition of Blogging marathon (BM# 19). This time I signed up for all 4 weeks since the themes were very interesting, thanks to our brilliant organizer Valli for that. It has been really busy past few weeks -- too much work at office and home. With my husband travelling continuously for the past 2-3 weeks, once I get home, I can't even find time to turn on the computer. But things are looking up and hopefully this madness will end pretty soon.

The theme I chose for the first week is "Cooking with Greens" and I picked the combo with Indian bread, Rice & a Gravy dish. So that is what is coming up for the next 3 days. As I said before, life's been a little crazy and I couldn't prepare the dishes in advance, like I usually do. Me and my son will be like Popeye eating spinach and other leafy greens for the next 3 days.

Day 1: Mexican Green Rice with Arugula & Spinach (Arroz Verde) - Arugula is a peppery green and I can't think of any Indian green that tastes like it. But once cooked its flavor mellows down. I was nervous if my son would like it, but ate it without complaining.
This is a one-pot dish that is perfect as a quick main dish on a weeknight or as a side dish to an elaborate Mexican meal. Recipe is adapted from Vegetarian Times magazine. 

Ingredients: Serves 2 hungry people
Long grain rice - 1cup (I used Jasmine rice)
Baby Arugula - 2 big handfuls (about 2 cups)
Baby Spinach - 1 big handful (about 1 cup)
Cilantro - 1 handful (about 1 cup)
Onion - 1 medium, finely chopped
Green Pepper - 1 medium, coarsely chopped
Jalapeno - 1, chopped
Garlic - 2 cloves, minced
Red pepper flakes - 1/2tsp
Lime juice - 2tbsp
Salt - to taste
  • Heat 2tsp oil in a medium saucepan; add the onions, garlic and red pepper flakes. Saute until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.
  • In the meantime wash and drain the rice and keep aside.
  • Grind the greens along with green pepper and jalapeno into a smooth paste.
  • Once the onions are cooked through, add the rice and cook on medium-high flame, stirring frequently until rice is toasty and slightly browned.
  • Next add the ground green paste and ¾cup of water. Cook until most of the water evaporates, about 5-6 minutes.
  • Next add 1¾ cups of water, lime juice and salt; bring the mixture to a boil. Lower the heat to medium-low; cover and cook until all the water is absorbed and the grains are cooked through, about 12-15 minutes. (I use 1:2 rice:water measurement when cooking Jasmine rice -- adjust the water accordingly if using any other kind of rice). 
  • Turn off the heat and set aside for at least 10 minutes before digging in.
Serve with tomato salsa and a dollop of sour cream (I didn't have any on hand, so ate it with some yogurt). Sour cream is one of my favorite topping on anything that is even vaguely Mexican.
Lets check out what my fellow marathoners have cooked up for Day 1 of BM# 19.


  1. good one... looks very healthy..


  2. Wat a healthy,catchy and yummy green rice. I wont mind having them for my today's lunch.

  3. How interesting Pavani, that bowl of rice looks really so good and healthy. The last time I was interacting with my mexican colleague, we were cooking two different rice with cilantro. I made the mixed rice version and she made the mexican rice..which ended up tasting so much like our pulao types...she was surprised how much the similarity in both the cuisines..thanks for taking time to share these with us, amidst your busy schedule..appreciate your dedication for cooking..:)

    1. Mexican & Indian cuisines have quite similar flavors - especially the use of chiles & cumin, which is why a lot of Indians like Mexican fast foods here in the US.
      Thank you for your kind words.

  4. beautiful rice recipe.definitely would be a life savour for week night dinners. love that painted spoon.

  5. Never used Arugula.Rice looks delicious and great clicks as usual :)

  6. Superb presentation and yummy looking rice......

  7. oh my gosh, i'm drooling! haha

  8. wow! looks very tempting! I gotto leay my hands on Aragula


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