Although strawberry isn’t usually seen in savory dishes, it works incredibly well as an accompaniment to tomato in this vegan baked rice dish.
Ironically, tomatoes are considered berries (botanically speaking) while strawberries are, in fact, not. But both are technically fruits and a match made in heaven.
A strawberry-infused tomato sauce is a nice, summery alternative to richer sauces, yet it still packs a punch–especially with the addition of some fresh basil and a generous amount of vegan cheese to balance the sweetness.
It is certainly full of fiber (thank you, rice husks) but also plenty of antioxidants that keep you feeling great, fight free radicals, and boost your immune system.
This vegan baked rice would pair nicely with a bottle of pinot noir (more antioxidants!), savored on an outdoor patio, but that’s just my opinion. Eat it with whatever (and whomever) you want, but the end result is large, so I recommend sharing!
Baked Strawberry and Tomato Rice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup sliced white onions
- 1 cup fresh diced strawberries
- 1/2 cup fresh quartered tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1/2 cup tomato puree
- 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1.5 cups vegetable stock
- 1.5 cups brown rice
- 1/4 cup fresh sliced basil
- 2 cups vegan mozarella, sliced or shredded
1. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
2. Heat oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat, then add onions and sauté until fragrant and translucent (about 3-4 minutes).
3. Add strawberries, then continue to cook and mash the berries a bit as you do so.
4. Once berries start to soften, add tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato puree, and salt and pepper.
5. Slowly stir in wine and vegetable stock while increasing heat until mixture reaches a boil.
6. Stir in rice and mix for about a minute more, then remove from heat.
7. Transfer rice into greased baking dish and bake for about 40 minutes (until rice is tender).
8. Remove from oven, top with basil and cheese, and bake for about 5 minutes more (until cheese becomes melty).
9. Scoop and serve!
Also by Quincy: Japanese Soba Noodles with Kabocha Squash & Natto
Related: Warming Turmeric Rice with Okra
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Photos: Quincy Malesovas