Coconut Rice with Fragrant Onion Sauce

Image In my early 20’s my younger sister and I shared an apartment.  We had two cats, two bedrooms, and groups of friends five years apart.  Somehow it all worked.  I was big sister to many of her friends, and my responsibility for her kept me with my feet firmly on the ground.  We started off in a two bedroom ground floor suite that we could hop over the hedge and come in through the sliding doors, in a complex that had a pool that we never used.  Next step up was a one bedroom in a more amenable area, in an older building with bigger rooms, with a creepy guy across the way that used to exercise in his briefs (we called him Jock Strap).

Finally we moved into a huge two bedroom third floor suite.  It had been left in disrepair, so we made a quick agreement with the manager to paint the whole of it in exchange for the damage deposit.   There was even a horrible mustard yellow “feature” wall that had a large dark stain dribbled down it.  With a group of friends over one weekend (and a can of marine grade paint to cover the yellow wall), we got the whole of it done and moved into our first home-like suite.

There was a green grocer up the street who would sell us a stalk of celery or half a head of lettuce.  The butcher was across the street, with a grocery store across the laneway.  We ate well.  Not a lot, but well.

One of our mainstay dinners was a couple of pieces of chicken seasoned and baked for ½ an hour or so, while we cooked some rice and a veg.  Very plain, but it worked.  I think the format of the supper allowed me to get some nutrition in fairly quickly after a day’s work before I’d head down to the stables to train for a couple of hours.

Rice has always been an easy way to round out a meal.  I know we’re supposed to only eat brown rice, but it just takes too long!  I use it, but more usually Basmati or Japanese.  I’ll get my whole grains elsewhere.

When a large bowl of rice gets plunked down on a table family style, it quickly conforms to the shape of the bowl, and becomes less appealing.  This recipe builds in a bit of sauce, so it stays moist and tempting far longer. Tuck a couple of flowers in the side and your family will think you’ve gone all “gourmet” on them.      Click here for printable version.

Serves 8



¼ c canola oil

2 shallots, finely diced

3 green onions, finely chopped

¼ t salt


2 c water

1 can low-fat coconut milk (14 oz or 398 ml)

1 clove finely chopped garlic

¼ t salt

2 c basmati rice



Put the oil and chopped shallots in a small saucepan.IMG_4455

Cook on medium-high heat until the shallots start to sizzle.

Stir occasionally and lower the heat to prevent scorching. IMG_4456

Cook the shallots until golden, and remove from heat.

Stir in the green onion.IMG_4457

Sprinkle the salt over top and let sit while uncovered while it cools.IMG_4459

Once cool, store covered in the fridge for up to two days.

Let come to room temperature, or slightly heat it before using.


In a large saucepan, whisk together the water, coconut milk, garlic, and salt.

Cover and bring to a boil.

Stir in the rice.

Re-cover and reduce heat to a low simmer.

Cook for 20 minutes.

Remove from heat and fluff rice with a fork.

Cover and let rest for a few minutes before serving.

Stir in the warm onion sauce.


One Comment Add yours

  1. Barbara Williamson says:

    I am so making this! Thanks

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