Still on my quest to prepare anything I can ahead of time, I’ve spent the afternoon cooking 70 cups of copycat Cafe Rio cilantro lime rice. I’m mostly following Erica’s recipe (http://www.favfamilyrecipes.com/2007/11/jared-and-i-love-cafe-rio.html) after she’s cracked the code from this local favorite restaurant.
It takes a village.
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 tablespoon butter, diced
1 lime, zest and juice
3 cups rice
6 cups boiling water
3 chicken bouillon cubes, crushed if possible
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon dry sliced garlic pieces
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Boil water. Spray or oil a 9 x 13 inch cake pan and pour in the 3 cups of dry rice. Sprinkle on the cilantro, butter, chicken bouillon, sugar, and dried garlic pieces. Add boiling water and cover tightly with foil. Bake at 350 for approximately 70 minutes. Fluff with a fork and stir in the lime zest and juice. This stuff is GOOD.
Trying to conserve both time and energy, I baked two pans at a time and increased the temperature to 375 degrees and then let them cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Each of the three batches turned out perfect, which is totally unusual for me.
I still don’t know what happened that one time, about two years ago, when I was in charge of cooking the oven rice for a major dinner prior to Stake Conference . It seems like we were hosting not one, but TWO, visiting General Authorities, not to mention our wonderful Stake President, who just happened to be Gordon B. Hinckley’s son. Something went terribly wrong (surprise!) and my rice was not even close to being ready when it was time to serve this terrific group of leaders, and their lovely wives, an amazing salmon dinner. I DON’T KNOW WHAT HAPPENED. There was either an evil hex on my kitchen that night OR I didn’t increase the oven temperature and add extra cooking time. Thankfully, the kind sisters I was serving with were gracious about my mess-up and insisted that the guests would just assume we were trying to go very “low carb”…or something.
Anyway, the rice for Rosie’s family dinner is D*O*N*E way way ahead of time.
My plan is to keep all the bags of rice frozen until the night before her farewell dinner and then microwave each as we’re ready to serve. Provident Living.