Everyone in my family (actually, pretty much everyone I know), loves Pilaf, so it was always one of those things were were never allowed to "mess with." I had a hard enough time getting people to allow me to use my preferred brand of rice (Uncle Ben's). I like that it holds its shape and doesn't get mushy like many other brands (no Uncle B tonight). I was recently asked for spinach as a side item. I have no idea why, but it never occurs to me to cook spinach just for it's own sake. I'll use it in salads, pasta dishes, chicken dishes, spinach pie, quiche, you name it - I just never think to cook it as a side. That cinched it for me. I decided since I was going to be using spinach already anyhow, I was going to throw caution to the wind and mess with the rice. Mmwwwahaha ...
Whenever I visit a friend in the Boston area, I make a point of trying to get to Jimmy's Steer House in Arlington. They serve a bunch of things I like, starting with their Zucchini Sticks. Then we usually move on to the Chicken Teriyaki and Pilaf with a side salad and Peppercorn Parmesan dressing. I pretty much like it all, from their bread basket to the croutons in their salad. I can count on one hand (with two missing fingers) the number of places where I will order rice, and Jimmy's is one of them. It was theirs that prompted me to make this version.
Everyone ended up raving over it and looking for more, asking what was in it. They couldn't believe it was just spinach and onion that made that much of a difference.
6 T butter
1 sm onion, diced
1 c rice
2 c chicken broth
1 chicken bouillon cube
1/2 - 3/4 c cooked chopped spinach
Over medium heat, melt the butter and saute the onion until translucent.
Add the rice and stir to coat well with the butter. Let it cook that way for a minute or so, stirring to prevent scorching.
Add the broth and bouillon and bring it up to a boil. Let it continue to boil, stirring frequently (yes, stir the rice), until the bubbles recede to the surface and you start to see holes forming in the rice. Reduce the heat to low, pop a cover on it and continue until tender.
When ready to serve, fluff the rice with a serving fork, squeeze any excess moisture out of the spinach (so you don't turn your rice green), and stir into the rice.
If you plan to use fresh spinach (I used frozen), I would suggest you either steam or saute it ahead to wilt it down, then finely dice it. Unless it's St. Patrick's Day, you definitely don't want to cook it with the rice!