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Lamb or Pork Pilaf with Apricots and Raisins

Posted Apr 22 2012 6:13pm
When I first thought of putting this dish together, I wondered how well the flavor of the apricots, raisins and pork would complement (or not) each other.  I went with the pork instead of the lamb, not because I preferred using pork, but because Acme was completely out of lamb:(  This dish came out delicious, so no loss at all, but next time I'm definitely going for the lamb.

I decided to use dried apricot halves.  You might want to cut up the dried apricot into small bits, but if you're cool with big bite-fulls of sweet and plump apricot throughout your Pilaf (like I am), don't change anything.  Although golden raisins would be ideal, dark raisins work just as nicely.  This dish is a unique amalgamation of flavors, but they're all yummy!  Prepare to surprise your palate with something very different:)

Enjoy!

Prep Time = 20 minutes
Cooking Time = 50 minutes
Servings = 4+

Ingredients
  • 2 tblsp butter or margarine
  • 1 cup long or short-grain brown rice
  • 1 large yellow onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 tblsp fresh ginger (minced) 
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 cups gluten free beef or vegetable stock
  • 3 tblsp vegetable or olive oil
  • 1 pound pork loin or boneless leg of lamb, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • 2 small zucchini (diced)
  • 4 oz small mushrooms (halved)
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots (chopped or whole)
  • 1/2 cup dark or golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup minced parsley 
  • Directions
  •  Melt the butter in a medium-size saucepan over moderate heat. Add the rice, onion, 1 tblsp of the ginger, and the garlic.  Saute until the rice is pale gold... about 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover it, and simmer for about 30 minutes, or until most of the liquid is absorbed.
  • Meanwhile... heat 1 tblsp of the oil in a 12-inch skillet over moderately high heat for 1 minute. Sprinkle the pork or lamb with salt and pepper, and then add to the skillet... brown the meat on all sides (about 10 minutes).
  • Using a slotted spoon, transfer the meat to a plate lined with paper towels and set aside.
  • Add the remaining oil to the skillet, reduce the heat to moderate and heat for 1 minute. Add the zucchini and the remaining ginger and saute until the zucchini is softened (about 3 minutes).  Add the mushrooms and saute until tender (3 to 4 minutes more). Set aside.
  • Add the apricots and raisins to the rice, cover and continue cooking until all the liquid is absorbed (about 10 minutes more).
  • Return the meat to the skillet, add the rice mixture, toss well to mix, and heat just to serving temperature (uncovered), over medium heat.  
  • Stir in the minced parsley.
  • Serve and enjoy!
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