Red Rice from Antelope Jamboree

1 Red bell pepper
14 oz Canned tomatoes
1 1/2 cups Vegetable broth
1 tbsp Chili powder
or more up to 4 tablespoons depending on desired heat
Salt and pepper
to taste
2 tbsp Ghee (clarified butter) or regular butter or vegetable oil (vegan)
1 tsp Cumin seed
1 whole Onion
fine dice
3 cloves Garlic
fine dice
2 cups White or brown Basmati rice
This is an excellent contribution to any southwest inspired meal. This recipe is much more flavorful than the bland red rice you find at Mexican restaurants. The level of heat can easily be regulated by adjusting the chili powder. Flame roasting the red bell pepper makes for good times in the kitchen. It's quite the spectacle and very aromatic....great for hosting and entertaining your guests.
Flame roast the whole red bell pepper. This can be done most easily with metal tongs over a gas range ... simply place the bell pepper directly onto the metal grate of your stove on high heat. Cook directly in the flame, turning occasionally until the entire pepper is charred BLACK ... approx 5-6 minutes ... otherwise, attempt under the broiler in your oven. Place the pepper in a small pot with a tight fighting lid to allow the charred skin to soften. Allow to cool 15 minutes. Using your hand simply pull the charred skin away from the pepper .... run your hand under clean water to help remove all the tiny bits of charred skin from your hand. Pull off the stem and tear open the pepper to remove seeds with your hand ... your pepper should be bright red and soft. If you like you can rinse the pepper under running water, but that will remove some of the flavor.
In a blender, add the flame roasted bell pepper, the can of tomatoes, chili powder, and salt and pepper. Pulse until smooth. Pour this red purée into a liquid measuring cup, and add enough vegetable broth to make the red purée equal 4 cups.
In a medium pot, bring the red purée mixture to a boil and turn off heat.
In a large cast iron skillet, heat your ghee, butter or oil over high heat.
Add the whole cumin seed and stir to keep from burning ... 30 seconds to 1 minute ... the cumin should darken slightly, sizzle and become very aromatic ... don't burn the spices! If you do, you must start over.
Add the onion, stir and sauté for approximately 5 minutes until it becomes translucent.
Add the garlic, stir and sauté for approx 3 minutes, until onion and garlic start to brown.
Stir in dry rice. Sautée approx 3 minutes until most of the rice becomes a more white color.
Pour the hot red liquid into the rice onion mixture ... be careful it will bubble and splatter! Give a quick stir to mix rice and red liquid.
Cover cast iron skillet with a tight fitting lid. Simmer 20 minutes, or until rice is done.
Add more salt and pepper to taste.
This can be prepared vegan by substituting ghee for vegetable oil.