When I was working at Fine Cooking magazine, one of my favorite stories was one we did with Mexican food expert James Peyton about Mexican rice dishes.  I learned so much and came away with some delicious recipes — Arroz Verde (green rice) being my favorite. Over the years, I have played around with Peyton’s recipe and paired it with everything from white beans to Brussels sprouts to pot roast. Once you make it, I think you’ll love having it in your repertoire. I’ve made this recipe with both Texmati and Jasmine rice. You will need a total of 1 2/3 cups liquid for Texmati, but only 1 1/2 cups for Jasmine rice, so read the directions carefully and measure everything out (including water) before starting. 

Yields about 3 cups

  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1 quarter-sized slice fresh ginger
  • ½ cup packed cilantro leaves and tender sprigs
  • 3/4 cup packed baby spinach leaves
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil or grapeseed oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced scallions (white and light green parts)
  • 1 cup Texmati or Jasmine rice
  • 1/3 cup half-n-half (for Texmati rice), 1/4 cup if using Jasmine

1. In a blender, combine the garlic and ginger. Blend until well-chopped. (You will need to stop the blender and scrape the sides a few times.) Add the cilantro, baby spinach, ¼ teaspoon salt, and 1 cup water. Blend on high until the greens are well-pureed.

2. In a medium saucepan, heat the butter with the oil over medium heat. Add the scallions and cook until just softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the rice and 1 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring, until the rice is fragrant and beginning to toast and crackle, about 2 minutes. Add the contents of the blender and 1/3 cup water plus 1/3 cup half-n-half if using Texmati but only ¼ cup water and ¼ cup half-n-half if using Jasmine. Stir well, and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to the lowest setting, cover, and cook for 20 minutes (Texmati) or 15 minutes (Jasmine).

3. Remove the pan from the heat and let sit 5 minutes. With a fork, fluff the rice and stir in the green layer on the top. Cover the rice with a paper towel and the lid again, and let sit 5 more minutes.