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Olive-Pressed Rice with French Mornay Sauce

  • Prep 20 min
  • Total 30 min
  • Ingredients 17
  • Servings 6

Ingredients

2
strips of bacon, chopped
2
garlic cloves, diced
1/2
cup diced onion
3
cups white rice
1
cup black olives, puréed
1/2
cup raisins
1/2
cup red bell pepper, diced
1
cup spinach, cut into strips
2
tablespoons toasted almonds (sliced)
4
cups boiling hot water

For the cheese sauce:

1 1/2
tablespoons butter
3 1/2
tablespoons flour
2
cups hot milk
Salt and white pepper
1
clouté onion*
1
cup grated cheese (gruyere, cheddar, etc.)
1/4
teaspoon ground nutmeg

Nutrition Information

NUTRITION INFORMATION PER SERVING

Serving Size: 1 Serving
% Daily Value
% Daily Value*:
Exchanges:
Free
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
No nutrition information available for this recipe

Expert Tips

When preparing any type of white sauce, it's recommended to use white pepper for seasoning. The addition of black pepper to a white sauce can make the presentation of your dish seem 'dirty.'

Throughout the years I have served countless variations of this rice, sometimes only with vegetables or also mixed with bacon and ham. This is a spectacular side dish for accompanying turkey, pork and other types of meat; it also makes a very festive presentation for the table. This cheese sauce is a variation on the classic (white) bechamel recipe, where I've added a little grated cheese; it's a combination known as the traditional French mornay sauce. This dressing is extremely versatile and pairs well with rice, but if you rather opt for something different, a sweetened balsamic vinegar reduction can add a tangy and delicious toque to your dish as well. To change it up a bit, you can make a risotto with this same recipe. Just replace the long-grain rice for Arborio or Italian short-grain rice and follow the instructions, but this time, switch the white wine for red to complement the beautiful colors of this dish. To garnish, julienne a few tender spinach leaves and sprinkle on top-the results are simply divine!

*To prepare an onion 'clouté' style, all you'll need is a small onion, one bay leaf and three cloves. Peel the onion and partially cover with a bay leaf. Hold the leaf in place by inserting the cloves through the leaf and into the onion. Your onion is now ready to be simmered in the sauce

Directions

  • 1 In a large pot, cook the bacon over medium heat until it becomes a bit crunchy. Remove from heat and let the bacon dry over a few paper towels. Reserve the leftover shortening in the pan.
  • 2 Using the same pan, sauté the chopped onion and garlic in the bacon drippings. Stir occasionally for five minutes (without browning) before adding the rice. Continue to stir for two or three minutes, then pour-in four cups of boiling hot water, along with the olive paste, raisins and chopped bell pepper.
  • 3 Season with salt and pepper to taste, but remember that olives already add salt on their own. Cover the pot before lowering the heat, and let simmer-without stirring or uncovering-for 25 minutes. Afterwards, mix lightly with a fork and add the bacon and spinach.
  • 4 Meanwhile, melt the butter in a separate saucepan. Incorporate the flour while stirring rapidly-the final result should turn slightly golden in color. Next pour the hot milk into the saucepan while mixing with a whisk. This will prevent lumps from forming.
  • 5 After the mixture is well blended, lower the heat and place the clouté-prepared onion in the sauce. Season with salt and white pepper as desired. Stir frequently to keep the sauce from sticking to the bottom of the pot.
  • 6 When the sauce has begun to thicken and the taste of raw flour has disappeared, sprinkle the grated cheese and ground nutmeg on top. Adjust the seasoning if necessary and discard the onion.
  • 7 Last, set the prepared rice into a rectangular or round mold. Then turn over onto a serving dish and drizzle with the cheese mornay sauce before serving.

Throughout the years I have served countless variations of this rice, sometimes only with vegetables or also mixed with bacon and ham. This is a spectacular side dish for accompanying turkey, pork and other types of meat; it also makes a very festive presentation for the table. This cheese sauce is a variation on the classic (white) bechamel recipe, where I've added a little grated cheese; it's a combination known as the traditional French mornay sauce. This dressing is extremely versatile and pairs well with rice, but if you rather opt for something different, a sweetened balsamic vinegar reduction can add a tangy and delicious toque to your dish as well. To change it up a bit, you can make a risotto with this same recipe. Just replace the long-grain rice for Arborio or Italian short-grain rice and follow the instructions, but this time, switch the white wine for red to complement the beautiful colors of this dish. To garnish, julienne a few tender spinach leaves and sprinkle on top-the results are simply divine!

Rate and Comment

Morena Cuadra Morena Cuadra
September 28, 2015

Throughout the years I have served countless variations of this rice, sometimes only with vegetables or also mixed with bacon and ham. This is a spectacular side dish for accompanying turkey, pork and other types of meat; it also makes a very festive presentation for the table. This cheese sauce is a variation on the classic (white) bechamel recipe, where I've added a little grated cheese; it's a combination known as the traditional French mornay sauce. This dressing is extremely versatile and pairs well with rice, but if you rather opt for something different, a sweetened balsamic vinegar reduction can add a tangy and delicious toque to your dish as well. To change it up a bit, you can make a risotto with this same recipe. Just replace the long-grain rice for Arborio or Italian short-grain rice and follow the instructions, but this time, switch the white wine for red to complement the beautiful colors of this dish. To garnish, julienne a few tender spinach leaves and sprinkle on top-the results are simply divine!