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Recipe Friday: September is National Rice Month

It's September and that means it's time to celebrate National Rice Month! 

Rice was first grown about 130 million years ago in the south-eastern part of Asia. Today, the typical American consumes an average of 26 pounds of rice per year and it’s no wonder. Rice is a healthy, versatile, economical dish that is sodium- and cholesterol-free and contains just a trace of fat. Sustainably grown U.S. rice helps consumers reduce their food miles by choosing a domestically grown product. Look for the “Grown in the USA” logo on packages of 100-percent U.S.-grown rice

Check out these recipes from Think Rice as you celebrate rice and its many uses this September.  

Cider Braised Chicken with Wild Rice

Yield: 4


2-3 lbs chicken pieces, skin-on & bone-in
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 T olive oil
1 ea. shallot, finely chopped
2 cups apple cider
1 cup bone or chicken broth
2 T coarse grain dijon mustard
1 cup Wild Rice, uncooked
½ cup unsalted butter
2 T fresh parsley, chopped


  1. Heat a large enameled cast-iron braising pan with lid over medium heat until very hot. Add oil and shallot to pan, sautéing until soft, about 1-2 minutes. Stir frequently, being careful not to burn. Add thighs and sear skin side down for 4 minutes on each side. Transfer to a plate. When cool enough to handle, slip 1 Tablespoon of butter underneath the skin of each thigh. This will fry the skin from the inside out, resulting in super crispy skin!
  2. Pour the cider and wine into the pan and bring to a boil, scraping off the bits from the bottom of the pan with the edge of a wooden spoon. Let reduce for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the broth and stir in mustard. Bring to a boil. Add rice, cover and carefully transfer to the oven for 20 minutes. Return chicken to pan, skin side up. Cover and transfer to the oven for 45-50 minutes more or until rice is cooked and the internal temperature of the chicken reads 165F on a digital-read thermometer. Uncover and broil chicken for the last 5 minutes of cooking. Stir in ¼ cup butter and parsley and serve.

Butternut Squash and Brown Rice Risotto

Yield: 4


1 T olive oil
1 ea. large shallot minced
1 cup short-grain brown rice
½ cup white wine
6 cups low-sodium chicken stock or vegetable stock
10-oz bag frozen cubed butternut squash or fresh (about 2½ cup)s
1 tsp dried sage
¼ tsp nutmeg
kosher salt
3 T heavy cream optional
¼ cup dried cranberries
2 oz blue cheese or ¼ cup grated parmesan


  1. Put the chicken (or vegetable) stock in a saucepan and bring it to a boil. Turn the heat down to very low so the stock stays hot.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a second large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and sauté for about 4 minutes, until light golden in color.
  3. Add the rice and stir for one minute to coat the grains with olive oil.
  4. Add the white wine to the rice and reduce the heat to medium.
  5. Add about 2 ladles of the hot stock to the risotto, and let it come to a simmer. If necessary, turn the heat down to medium-low so it simmers, not boils. As the stock is absorbed, add another ladle or two and repeat until the rice is creamy and tender. This will take at least 40 minutes, or longer. You may not need all of the stock.
  6. As the risotto is cooking, add the butternut squash. It will only need about 10 minutes to soften, but it's OK to cook it longer if you prefer it broken down.
  7. Add the sage, nutmeg, and Kosher salt to taste.
  8. Add the cream if you desire a creamier texture, along with the cranberries and cheese.
  9. Stir well to combine and serve immediately.

Zydeco Gumbo

Yield: 6


  1. 1¼ lbs boneless chicken, cubed or 2 pounds cut up chicken parts with bone and skin
  2. 2 ea. medium onions, cut into wedges
  3. 1 ea. green pepper, cut into strips
  4. 1 (13-oz) can whole tomatoes
  5. ¼ cup worcestershire sauce
  6. 2 T prepared mustard
  7. 2 T garlic, minced
  8. 1 tsp ground thyme
  9. 1 tsp dried rosemary
  10. ½ tsp ground black pepper
  11. ½ lb shrimp, cooked, peeled and deveined
  12. 3 cups hot cooked rice


  1. Combine chicken, onions, green pepper, tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic, thyme, rosemary, black pepper and shrimp. Cover and bring to a boil. Simmer 45 minutes or until chicken is tender and flavors mellow together.
  2. Add shrimp and heat 1 minute.
  3. Serve with scoops of rice in wide soup bowls.

Fall Wild Rice Pilaf

Yield: 4-5


1 cup wild rice
1 ea. delicata squash, seeded and cut into half moons
1 cup cauliflower florets
1 cup butternut squash, cubed
2 T avocado oil
salt and pepper
2½ cup lacinato kale, de-stemmed
1 cup chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 ea. medium apple, chopped
¼ cup pumpkin seeds
½ cup shredded parmesan

Ingredients for Pumpkin Vinaigrette

2 T apple cider vinegar
2 T pumpkin puree
1 tsp dijon mustard
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt (to taste)
pepper (to taste)
red pepper flakes (to taste)


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Toss the delicata squash, cauliflower, and butternut squash with the avocado oil and salt and pepper. Roast for about 15-20 minutes, tossing halfway through.
  3. In the meantime, cook the wild rice according to package directions on the stove or in a rice cooker.
  4. Prepare the apples, chickpeas and kale. Slightly massaging the kale with a little bit of oil so that it softens. Next, prepare the pumpkin vinaigrette by whisking all of the ingredients together in a small bowl.
  5. Once the rice has cooked and the veggies have roasted, toss everything together, topping with pumpkin seeds and parmesan cheese last followed by the vinaigrette and enjoy!

Rice Pudding with Bourbon Glazed Apples

Yield: 4

Ingrredients for Rice Pudding

2 cups milk
1 cup heavy whipping cream
¾ cup jasmine rice
¼ cup condensed milk
¼ cup brown sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp salt


  1. Place milk, rice, brown sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon and salt into a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer and let simmer uncovered for about 30 minutes or until rice is soft. Stir occasionally.
  2. Once cooked, remove from heat and let cool completely.
  3. Place heavy cream into a bowl and whip with an electric mixer until whipped cream has formed.
  4. Once the rice is completely cooled, mix in the whipped cream and condensed milk. You should have a creamy sweet consistency.

Bourbon Glazed Apples

2 cups apples peeled and cubed
2 T brown sugar
1 T butter
1 T bourbon
¼ tsp cinnamon


  1. Place brown sugar and butter into a sautee pan and cook on medium/high heat until sugar is melted.
  2. Add apples and cook for 6-7 minutes or until apples become soft. Add bourbon and cinnamon. Let cool.
  3. Transfer rice pudding into serving dishes and layer or top with bourbon glazed apples.
  4. Ready to serve. Can be refrigerated for 2-3 days.


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