Tag: side dish

Simple Rice and Beans for Two

NOTE: This is an older recipe, of which I cannot retrace when I originally posted it before the hack of my old domain name.

You can’t really have jerk chicken without rice and beans. So here’s a nice and simple rice and beans recipe to go with my slow cooker jerk chicken. It’s based on Carly the Prepster’s single serve rice and beans. I’ve made some minor adjustments and I think it’s more than enough for two.

A plate of rice and beans

Simple Rice and Beans for Two

Dorothy Porker
A small serving of fragrant mildly spicy Caribbean-style rice and beans for small households.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Dinner, Lunch, Side dish
Cuisine Caribbean
Servings 2


  • Small saucepan


  • 2 tbsp / 30 ml olive oil other oils work as well
  • 1/2 c / 230 gr rice
  • 1 clove garlic finely chopped
  • 1 tsp / 5 gr cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp / 2.5 gr chili powder
  • pinch salt
  • pinch cayenne more if you like more heat
  • 1 c / 60 gr black beans kidney beans also work, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 c / 100 gr tomatoes from a tin, cut up into smaller chunks
  • 1/2 c / 120 ml water
  • bunch cilantro roughly chopped for serving, optional


  • To make rice and beans, heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a small saucepan over a medium high heat.
  • Add 1/2 c/ 230 gr of rice, stirring continually until all the grains are lightly coated in oil.
  • Now add 1 minced clove of garlic, 1 tsp/ 5 gr of cumin, 1/2 tsp/ 2.5 gr of chili and pinches of salt and cayenne. Stir for 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
  • Stir in 1 c/ 60 gr of black beans, 1/2 c/ 100 gr of crushed tomatoes and 1/2 c/ 120 ml of water and turn up the heat.
  • Once it's come to a boil, reduce the heat to low, put the lid on and leave to simmer for 20 minutes until all the liquids has been absorbed or evaporated and the rice is fully cooked.
  • Sprinkle with cilantro (if you're not genetically impaired) and serve.
Keyword beans, rice, rice recipe, side dish, side dishes, sides

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Peppercorn and Lime Rice

I am a self professed book hoarder. Given my situation and the state of the world I’ve been able to cut back on a lot of stuff, like using half the electricity, gas and water, and only having to take out the trash once every 2 weeks, largely due to the smell, but not because my trash can is full.

The one thing I cannot seem to cut back on is books. This is all books, but books in relation to the Dutch East Indies and cookbooks in particular.

A bookshelf filled with cookbooks and a copy of On The Side shown in front.

On The Side

Dutch as I am, then I also love a sale, so when I saw Ed Smith’s On The Side at the American Book Center in The Hague a while ago, I had to have it.

It has since become the most heavily bookmarked cookbook I ever owned. I don’t know why more people aren’t writing cookbooks about side dishes, but On The Side is a genius list of simple, mostly vegetable based side dishes. Including explanations on what to have them with, or how to combine them to make a full meal.

I’m in love with this book and I basically cannot stop cooking from it. There’s never an occasion where you don’t need a side now, is there?

The ingredients for peppercorn and lime rice

Variations on three peppercorn wild rice

The first recipe I cooked, and cooked again and again and again, from On The Side, is this 3 peppercorn wild rice dish. Sometimes I’ll make it with plain or brown rice. Sometimes I’ll use the leftovers in a salad with some beans, chicken and cilantro, sometimes I’ll have it for lunch with some fried eggs and my hot-tingle mapo hot sauce, sometimes I’ll switch the eggs out for crispy oven-baked tofu puffs. Basically, it works with everything. As long as you like it hot.

I did switch out the lemon for lime and one of the peppercorns for Indonesian andaliman pepper, since that’s what I had laying around, but you can basically pick and mix from your own cupboard.

A bowl of pepercorn and lime rice surrounded by peppercorns and limes

Peppercorn and lime rice

Dorothy Porker
This three peppercorn and lime rice from Ed Smith's On The Side is delicious and punchy and will make any meal more festive and fancy.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Side dish, Sides
Cuisine Asian
Servings 2


  • Rice cooker OR
  • Heavy bottomed small (sauce)pan with a lid
  • Fine sieve, optional
  • Pestle and mortar or spice/ coffee grinder


  • 1 c - 225 gr wild rice plain (non-stick) rice will also work
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 t - 5 gr black peppercorns
  • 1 t - 5 gr Sichuan peppercorns black seeds removed
  • 1 t - 5 gr Andaliman peppercorns if you can't find these pink or green peppercorns are nice as well
  • salt to taste


Methods for cooking the rice

  • Rinse and wash your rice thoroughly until any added water runs clear.
  • Cook 1 c - 225 gr of rice in a rice cooker, according to your manufacturer's instructions.
  • Alternatively cook 1 c - 225 gr of rice in a heavy bottomed (sauce)pan with ample water by bringing it to the boil, lid on, and then leaving it to simmer for 3 minutes less than the packet instructions prescribe. Strain the rice and place it back in the saucepan, lid on, and leave to sit for another 3 minutes for perfectly fluffy rice. This is Ed Smith's method.
  • Place 1 c - 225 gr of rice in a heavy bottomed (sauce)pan. Add water until the rice sits 1 index phalanx deep in water. Bring to a boil on a medium heat with the lid on. Leave to cook for 5 minutes. Move to the lowest heat you have and steam for another 15 minutes for perfectly fluffy rice. This is the Asian method that I learned from my grandmother.

To finish the rice

  • While your rice is cooking, grind together 1 t - 5 gr of each of the peppercorns in a pestle and mortar and squeeze out the juice of 1 lime.
  • Once the rice is cooked, fluff it up with a fork and stir in the peppercorn mixture, lime juice and salt to taste.
Keyword cookbook recipe, ed smith, on the side, rice, side dish, side dishes

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Honey Roast Carrots with Feta

That’s it. That’s the recipe. Honey roast carrots with sumac, feta, coriander and pine nuts. I love easy pretty meals so Donna Hay‘s Fast, Fresh and Simple is high on my usability list.

The cover of Donna Hay's Fast Fresh Simple Cookbook

Sides are mains too

This is supposed to be a side but I have it as a main by myself for dinner all the time. If it’s not filling enough for you add some bread.

Variations on a theme

Donna makes it with goat cheese but I find feta works equally well. As you can imagine you can do this with many different root vegetable, cheese and nut combos.

Honey Roast Carrots with Feta

Dorothy Porker
Delicious roast carrots that can serve as a side or a main. Inspired on a recipe from Donna Hay's Fast, Fresh, Simple.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Dinner, Main course, Side dish
Cuisine Middle Eastern
Servings 2


  • Oven
  • Small bowl
  • Oven dish
  • Tin foil
  • Fork
  • Frying pan or skillet


  • 2 T - 30 ml honey
  • 3 T - 45 ml olive oil
  • 1 t - 5 gr cumin
  • pinch salt
  • pinch pepper
  • bunch carrots
  • 2 T - 30 gr pine nuts
  • 3/4 c - 100 gr feta
  • bunch coriander roughly chopped
  • 1 t - 5 gr sumac


  • Preheat your oven at 200° C/ 400° F. Mix together the 2 T - 30 ml honey, 3 T - 45 ml olive oil, pinches of salt and pepper and 1 t - 5 gr cumin in a small bowl.
  • Wash a bunch of carrots and trim the tops. If you are so inclined, you can peel them like I did for this shoot, but normally I can't be bothered to be honest.
  • Now coat the carrots in the honey mixture and place them into a nice roomy oven dish. Cover with tinfoil and bake in the oven for 15 minutes.
  • Remove the tinfoil and bake for another 15 minutes, until the edges start to caramelize.
  • While your carrots are doing that, use a fork to crumble up 3/4 c - 100 gr of feta. Use more if you want, because feta. Dry roast 2 T - 30 gr of pine nuts in a dry skillet or frying pan to get a nice color of them and boost the flavor.
  • As soon as your carrots come out of the oven, sprinkle over the crumbled feta, toasted pine nuts and chopped coriander and finally 1 T - 15 gr of sumac. You can move it to a nice plate before you do this of course, or just leave it and dig right in.


On a hot day I am sure you can also leave the carrots to cool before adding the feta, pine nuts, coriander and sumac but I mostly eat this in winter and the heat from the carrots gives the feta a nice little melt so I mostly eat this piping hot.
Keyword carrots, cookbook recipe, donna hay, easy vegetarian, fast fresh simple, power vegetables, vegetarian

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Butternut Squash with Chipotle Crema

I should have googled what piquillos were before I made this. Because I ended up making this butternut squash piquillo crema recipe from Lucky Peach presents Power Vegetables with a tin of chipotles in adobo instead.

What’s the difference between piquillos and chipotles in adobo?

Everything basically Piquillos and chipotle in adobo are very much not the same thing. At all.

The latter is mad spicy, the former? Not so much. Still it’s one of my favorite delicious mistakes. Since you can’t get piquillos as easily here, though I reckon sweet red peppers might do. Still, I’ve found no other purpose for chipotle in adobo that I like as much as this.

That’s great but how do I eat this butternut squash?

I tend to eat this vegetarian butternut squash with chipotle crema with a good helping of pasta, though I’d imagine a warm bowl of rice will also do nicely.

I save the remainder of the garlic oil to roast potatoes, veggies, meats and fried eggs. Garlic all the things basically.

The book suggests you can have this as a side (I’m not sure with what though, maybe a good medium-rare steak or some expertly roast chicken) or as I have described above, with some pasta or rice as a comforting main. Even if you use the wrong sort of chili.

A bowl of roast butternut squash with chipotle crema surrounded by its main ingredients as well as a towel, grated cheese and some dried linguine

Butternut Squash with Chipotle Crema

Dorothy Porker
Vegetarian recipe for butternut squash and chipotle crema inspired by fucking up a recipe from Lucky Peach presents Power Vegetables.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Dinner, Main course, Side dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 2


  • Oven
  • Small saucepan
  • Microwave proof bowl or cup
  • Large skillet or frying pan
  • Oven tray and parchment or an ovenproof dish
  • Blender


  • 4 cloves garlic Peeled
  • 2 c - 500 ml olive oil roughly, see recipe
  • 1 c - 250 ml creme fraîche
  • 1/4 c - 20 gr chipotle en adobo basically one chipotle with some adobo
  • 1 t - 5 gr salt
  • 1/2 butternut squash peeled and cubed
  • 1 c - 80 gr Parmesan grated
  • 1/4 c - 20 gr coriander roughly chopped


  • Preheat your oven to 200° C/ 400° F.
  • Confit 4 cloves of peeled garlic by placing them in a small saucepan and covering it in olive oil until it starts to float. Place it on a low heat, bring to a simmer and then turn down the heat as low as possible, leaving it for 20 minutes.
  • Toss the cubes of half a butternut squash in a the garlic oil. You want to lightly coat the cubes, salt and then roast them in an even layer for about 30 minutes on a baking tray lined with parchment or in an ovenproof dish. Toss halfway through.
  • Warm 1/4 c - 250 ml of creme fraîche in a microwave proof bowl in the microwave at low for 1 minute. Pour into a blender with 1/4 c - 20 gr of chipotle en adobo, 4 cloves of confit garlic and 1 tsp - 5 gr of salt and blend until smooth.
  • Pour the crema into a large skillet set over a low heat, add the roasted squash and toss to combine. Stir in 1/2 c - 40 gr of cheese until melted. Serve topped with the remainder of the cheese and the cilantro.


Store any leftover garlic oil in an airtight container and use to roast potatoes, veggies, meats, fried eggs, whatever tickles your pickle. It will keep for 2-3 weeks in the fridge. 
Keyword chipotle en adobo, lucky peach, Mexican food, pasta sauce, peter meehan, power vegetables, side dish, side dishes

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