Okay, I’m officially obsessed with my Inspiralized rice. And so is Lu. The other night, it was an end-of-the-week, “what can we pull together for dinner?” sort of night. The fridge was looking bare (well, bare for me!), but I had plenty of spiralize-able veggies, including butternut squash.
I saw chorizo, olives and half a yellow onion and offered to make “Spanish Butternut Squash Rice with Chorizo.” Totally up Lu’s Latin-American alley- plus, as of late, he thinks my Inspiralized rice is “revolutionary.” Actually, he told me that it’s even more mind-blowing than zucchini noodles. I don’t know if I buy that, but I’m definitely going to post up more Inspiralized rice recipes, since they are just that good.
While you could swap in chorizo for the ham here, I think the ham is easier, because it doesn’t need any additional cooking – just heat it up with the rice in the pan and it’s a quicker, easier meal!
These one pot dishes are ideal for those of you with small kitchens or limited countertop space. Literally, you just keep adding spices and ingredients into a saucepan or skillet, and you’ve got yourself a n impressive, healthy, low-cal and low-carb meal – in minutes!
The Adobo spices in this really give this dish an authenticity and the manzanilla olives add a saltiness that complements the simple taste of the butternut squash. The chicken broth brings everything together, not only adding a fragrance to the dish, but creating a creamy consistency as the squash absorbs the broth and it reduces.
If you’re a vegetarian, easily swap in vegetable broth and replace the ham with pinto beans.
Since peeling butternut squash takes a little extra time (it’s a tough veggie to peel!), I recommend doing that early in the day (or even on a Sunday night), in preparation to make this recipe. Or, you can make the actual rice and place it in a plastic bag or container for the week. So much easier than 30-40 minutes of making rice!
I’m happy to have this healthy alternative to rice, because, in all honesty, I always mess up rice! Actually, my mother introduced me to the quick 60-second individual cups of brown rices during college, and they were a dream.
The consistency of this Inspiralized Rice is crazy similar to regular rice – just a quarter of the calories and carbs! Plus, it doesn’t require waiting for water to boil, rice cookers or anything fancy like that.
What do you think of this rice? Have you tried it yet? What’s your favorite rice dish?
Spanish Butternut Squash “Rice” with Ham
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
- 1 butternut squash peeled, Blade C
- 1 tsp Adobo seasoning
- 1.5-2 tbsp tomato paste
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 pinch of saffron leaves
- 1/3 cup chopped manzanilla olives
- 1/2 cup cubed ham
- 1.5 cups chicken broth low-sodium
- Take the butternut squash noodles and place them in a food processor. Pulse until chopped into small rice-like bits. This may take many batches (you don't want to crowd the food processor). When done, set aside.
- In a large saucepan, add in the olive oil. Once the oil heats, add in the garlic and red pepper flakes. Let cook for 30 seconds and then add in the onion. Cook the onion for 2 minutes or until it begins to soften.
- Add in the butternut squash "rice," Adobo, tomato paste, saffron and season with salt and pepper. Stir continuously until tomato paste soaks into the rice. Then, add in the olives and ham. Stir to combine and then add in the 1 cup of the chicken broth.
- Stir the mixture and let chicken broth cook and reduce. Once reduced, add in another 1/2 cup. Once that 1/2 cup reduces, taste to see if the consistency is right (should be slightly soft yet still firm). If it needs to cook longer, add 1/4 cup more of broth.
- Once done, divide into four bowls and enjoy!