Monday, June 1, 2009

Rice, Mushrooms and Bacon Wrapped in Phyllo over Sweet & Spicy Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Mini Peppers

It's been a while since I participated in the friendly competition us food bloggers know as the Royal Foodie Joust, so lovingly hosted by her highness Jenn The Leftover Queen. So this month, I decided it was high time to get back into the game and what better way to do so than with three great ingredients chosen by last month's winner, the ever-so-talented, Nuria of Spanish Recipes. What are those great ingredients you ask? Well, rice, tomato and bacon of course.

The ingredients seem simple enough. And to be honest, when I first read what Nuria picked, I arrogantly thought to myself, "This is going to be a breeze." Errrrr! Wrong! Coming up with something unique and genuine with such common ingredients was much, much, much harder than I thought. And after one failed attempt (turns out rice pudding should remain under the dessert category and not make any savory debuts) and a week's worth of (mis)conceptualizing, I was all but ready to give this month's Joust up.

But then a little bell rang in this jumbled mind of mine. It tolled out, "Maria, think more along the lines of what you know." No fancy schmancy savory rice puddings; no rice terrines; just simple, solid flavors using techniques that can't go wrong. So here you have it -- rice sauteed with bacon, mushrooms and parsley then rolled into long packets of phyllo, baked and served over a bed of roasted cherry tomatoes and peppers tossed in sugar and spicy Hungarian Paprika.

Now head on over to Jenn's site and take a look at the array of entries for this month's Joust ... they're all truly mouthwatering.

Kali Orexi!

Rice, Mushrooms and Bacon Wrapped in Phyllo over Sweet & Spicy Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Mini Peppers

1 cup Arborio rice
1 1/2 cups water/chicken broth
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cups sliced mushrooms
6 oz. bacon, chopped
Handful of parsley, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon paprika
10 sheets of phyllo
Olive oil

Partially cook rice in 1 1/2 to 2 cups water, chicken broth or vegetable broth and set aside. In a large skillet, heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil and saute onion until soft. Add the bacon and cook until slightly browned. Stir in the mushrooms and toss to coat well with the bacon and onions. Add the rice to the skillet, season with salt, pepper and paprika and cook for a minute more. Sprinkle with parsley and remove from heat.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Take your phyllo, two sheets at a time, and oil the top sheet. Spoon some of the rice mixture along the shorter side of the phyllo about an inch from the edge. Begin rolling the phyllo over the mixture, making a long "packet," and brush the phyllo a little each time you roll the packet. Place in an oiled baking dish and brush top of phyllo packet with additional oil. Continue with the remaining phyllo and rice mixture; you should have five long rows of phyllo stuffed with rice. Score the tops of each row to cut through top layers of phyllo and make cutting through each piece later easier. Bake in center of oven for 45 minutes or until golden.

To serve as a first course, serve the phyllo packets over a bed of cherry tomatoes and mini peppers that have been tossed in sugar, hot Hungarian Paprika and olive oil, then roasted until tender.


maybelle's mom said...

what a pretty entry. I love the cherry tomatoes and minipepper picture.

Konstantina said...

Beautiful photos, very colorful!!
Sure these wraps are very very tasty!

Ivy said...

Your are very creative Maria. What's not to like in this recipe.

Ben said...

The tittle says it all! I want two orders to go, please :)

shambo said...

My goodness! What a great idea! I love the combination of flavors!

elly said...

These look great, Maria! Fabulous combo of ingredients and flavors.

Peter G said...

LOL! Yes I know that feeling of "experimentation" gone wrong! But this one's a winner. A really comfy, hearty serve Maria. I love it!

Mediterranean kiwi said...

delicious - love these crusty pies

♥Rosie♥ said...

Your photos are stunning and such beautiful colours! What a brilliant entry those wraps sure look good!

Bellini Valli said...

Good luck in the Jous Maria. This dish is amazing:D Wonderul use of the ingredients.

Janet @Gourmet Traveller 88 said...

Wow, this is a beautiful dish you made!!! Love the pictures. I have passed an award to you, come and collect it when you have time : )

Anonymous said...

Great Joust entry! The phyllo pastry looks delicious and I love the idea of sweet and spicy roasted cherry tomatoes!

Mushrooms Canada said...

You cannot go wrong with bacon and mushrooms! Love the photos, very colourful and appealing. Thanks for sharing!
- Brittany

Juliana said...

Very nice dish...looks delicious..and so tempting with all the colors in it. Great pictures!

Peter M said...

Maria, you came up with a good & creative dish...A joust win is near.

Your photos are improving with each post...bravo sou.