Poor Man’s Paella

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I know it’s lowbrow, but I’d forgotten how much I like Rice-a-roni. My mom made it a lot when I was a kid, and I found a box in my cupboard the other night, and needed to come up with a quick starch side. Turns out, not all flavors push my buttons. Beef flavor is good, but their chicken & garlic flavor is just ‘meh.’ I tried using it to make a quick meal for supper last night, and was disappointed that it didn’t have a more full-bodied taste.

I followed the directions on the box, and just before popping on the lid, I put on a package of frozen mixed vegetables. While it simmered, I peeled and cleaned a dozen large shrimp, and 5 minutes before the rice was supposed to be done, I scattered them around the pan. Sort of a poor man’s paella, I thought.

As I said, the dish could have used a stronger dose of flavor. If I were to make it again, I’d probably just go for regular rice cooked in chicken stock.