Spinach and Mackerel Rice

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Last week I was in a bit of a rut. I like to plan my meals ahead and I found myself making the same meals each week. A new one would pop up now and again, but mainly I just had a lot of foodie echoes. In an attempt to revitalize my shopping list I sat down with a pile of my food magazines and trawled through them all until I found something that caught my eye. If you're thinking at this point, you don't have the time or the magazines to trawl through, then don't worry, I'll do it for you.
The winner this week was Spinach and Mackerel Rice, courtesy of Waitrose Kitchen magazine, April 2013 issue.
I absolutely loved this dish, if you are about to dismiss this recipe because of the mackerel - don't. I used to be a bit apprehensive about mackerel too but it has a wonderful, rich flavour and can really stand up for itself in a big dish like this. It is also packed with loads of oily, omega goodness.
Mackerel is also a great budget food. This recipe only calls for 200g that you can find for about £2. I'm a bit of tactical thinker when it comes to protein (weird, I know), and mackerel is a winner for me.

For Spinach and Mackerel Rice you will need (serves 4):

25g unsalted butter
1 onion
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
2 tsp curry powder
600ml chicken stock
300g basmati rice
1 lemon
3 large handfuls spinach
200g peppered smoked mackerel fillets 

Begin by melting your butter in a large frying pan.

Chop your onion and add it to the pan along with the bay leaf and cinnamon stick. If you can't rustle up a cinnamon stick, a 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon would make an adequate substitute. Soften for about five minutes. 

Stir in the curry powder and simmer for a few seconds. 

Now add the stock.

And the rice and season. Bring to the boil and then cover and simmer for ten minute, until the stock has been absorbed into the rice.
If you don't have a pan lid, be inventive. I opted for a baking tray. 

If the pan is a little dry, add a splash of water to loosen the rice up. Now add the zest of your lemon and stir through.

Add the spinach, stir through and cover for five minutes to wilt.  

Now flake over the mackerel and cover for the last time, for about two minutes, until the rice is tender and the fish is warmed through.

Slice your zested lemon into wedges and plate up.

Super healthy, super brainy food. Perfect for the exam season.

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