Ranch Seasoned Rice | Easy, tangy rice that pairs perfectly with any meal
For the first time in over a century, the Cubs are the World Champions. I still kinda can’t believe it.
I am not a Cubs fan. Never have been. I was raised a Yankee fan, which I realize is odd for a girl who grew up in south-central Wisconsin. But my dad’s been a Yankee fan since he was a kid (he claims it’s because of a book he read about Mickey Mantle, but I am of the belief it’s more because my grandmother hated the Yankees, and he enjoyed irritating her), so he raised me and my younger to be Yankee fans.
Then I moved to Milwaukee, and fell in love with the Brewers. And I continue to suffer with the rest of the Brew Crew nation as we try to wait out this wonderful “rebuilding period.”
But as baseball approached the postseason, I found myself rooting for the Cubs. Not because I’m a bandwagoner, which I am steadfastly not. I love a good sports curse, and I hate it when they’re broken (the Curse of the Bambino should have lasted for millennia, as far as I’m concerned), so I should have been hoping that the Curse of the Billy Goat would last a little longer. But I have more personal reasons for wanting to finally see the Cubs end on top.
You see, my Grandma Rena (my dad’s mom) was the biggest Cubs fan I’ve ever known. She loved her Cubbies, even more than she loved her Packers and her Badgers and her Cheesemakers (yes, my hometown’s mascot is a man who makes cheese). She watched every game she could on TV, and made the trek down to the friendly confines of Wrigley Field multiple times a year to see them in person. When I think of the Cubs, I think of my Grandma Rena.
After a long decline in her quality of life, my grandma passed away last fall, almost exactly a year ago. Although I’ve lost other loved ones in my life before, nothing has impacted me as deeply and acutely as when I learned that my grandmother was gone. My Grandma Rena was one of my most favorite people on this planet, and although I was and still am glad that her suffering has finally ended, nothing will ever be able to fill the void she left behind.
So, you see, I couldn’t help but root for the Cubs. Because with every run they scored and every game they won, I could sense my grandma celebrating. I could see her smile and hear her laugh and feel her excitement. And now, her beloved Cubbies have finally won the World Series, something that has eluded them for so long. And I can’t help but smile and laugh and be excited too.
Ok, enough with the mushy stuff (my hormonal pregnant ass cried like 12 times just writing this entry so far). Let’s get back to the food.
I made this ranch-seasoned rice a few weeks back when I was looking for something a little different to serve alongside some grilled salmon. We eat a lot of rice in our house (my personal favorites are this creamy garlic parmesan rice and this garlic and herb rice), but sometimes I get tired of the same old, same old.
I perused my pantry and found some dry ranch seasoning packets, which seemed like a perfect thing to mix in with some cooked white rice. And I was right! This rice has that tanginess that you come to expect with ranch flavoring, without being overpowered by the flavor. It’s a perfect side dish to pair with grilled fish or chicken.
Ranch Seasoned Rice
- 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup white rice
- 2 cup water
- 1 (1 oz) package ranch dressing mix
- Pinch of ground black pepper
- In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Once olive oil is hot, add rice and saute, stirring frequently, until rice has puffed up a bit and turned a brighter color of white (this is called “toasting the rice”).
- Add water, reduce heat to medium-low, and cover saucepan with a lid. Cook until all the water has absorbed.
- Sprinkle ranch dressing mix and black pepper over rice and stir to combine.