This is a side dish I’ve made so many times that I cannot honestly tell you how I thought of it or if it was inspired by another recipe. It’s my go-to side dish for my homestyle version of Duck a l’orange (which is why I put the “French” in front of fusion), but it also goes really well with glazed salmon, or as a vegetarian dish on its own.

The addition of shiitake mushrooms gives this dish a bit of a funky earthiness, but if you don’t like shiitake mushrooms or don’t have access, any mushroom you do enjoy will substitute just fine.

rice pilaf mushrooms

Additionally, I find, that if you remove the stems from the shiitake, it’ll decrease the mushroom’s potency (or stank as I call it) which can be overpowering to some people’s palates.

Processed with VSCO with t1 preset

This is another recipe that’ll let you get your knife skills on, so hone that chef’s blade and let’s get goin’…

French-Fusion: Rice Pilaf

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Category: Big Bites, Sides

Servings: 2 to 4 servings

A fun, funky, French dish any home chef will enjoy making. Bon Appétit!


  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 1 large leek, diced
  • 1/2 cup shiitake mushrooms, de-stemmed (if desired) and sliced
  • 3/4 cups white basmati rice
  • 3/4 cups stock (beef, chicken, or vegetable all work)
  • 3/4 cups water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 ounce chopped pecans
  • Salt and Pepper to taste


  • Prepare a large stainless steel pan by coating generously with olive oil spray and pre-heating over medium heat on stovetop.
  • Combine the carrots and leeks in the pan with salt and pepper and sautée until carrots have softened and leeks are just cooked.
  • Remove leeks and carrots from the pan into a separate bowl and set aside.
  • Re-oil the pan and add the shiitake mushrooms with salt and pepper.
  • Sautée until just cooked then add the basmati rice.
  • Stir the dry rice with the mushrooms until the rice is lightly toasted.
  • Add the broth and the water to the pan.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat to low, add the cinnamon stick.
  • Cover securely with a lid, and let sit for 15 minutes (or until liquid has evaporated and rice cooked through).
  • One the rice is cooked through and water has fully evaporated, remove the cinnamon stick and add the cooked carrots and leeks back into the pan. Stir to combine.
  • Add the chopped pecans to the pan, stir to combine.
  • Taste the rice pilaf adding any additional salt or pepper to taste.
  • Serve hot.

rice pilaf
This recipe goes beautifully with crispy skin duck breast and a sticky sauce!



3 Comments on French-Fusion: Rice Pilaf

Leave a Reply