In the kitchen with Sharon

Sharon Hughes Staff columnmist

Sharon Hughes Staff columnmist

This is a picture of the dirty rice Sharon and Ronnie Hughes made.

Sharon Hughes | The Times-Gazette

Hello! In the kitchen this week is my son, Ronnie Hughes. He shared this recipe with me on the phone saying, “Mom, you must try this recipe. It is the best dish I have ever had.”

A friend of his made it and brought it to work to share with everyone. Immediately, my son called and shared it with me. So the next weekend I got the ingredients and he came over and we made it. I have made it twice since then. Wow is all I can say. My son’s friend used venison but I didn’t have any, so I improvised with lean ground beef. But for those deer hunters this will be a perfect way to use all your ground venison burger. You will not be sorry. I will eat this anytime.

Please send me your favorite recipes and I will put you in the kitchen with Sharon. Email me at [email protected] or call me at 937-393-3456.



Serves 6-8.

Prep time: Two hours.

Cooking time: 30 minutes.


2 cups of uncooked long-grain white rice (and required water)

2 pounds of ground beef (I used very lean beef — 93 percent)

2 tablespoons of olive oil, separated

Half a red bell pepper, ribs removed and diced

Half a green bell pepper, ribs removed and diced

2 ribs of celery, chopped

1 onion, chopped

1 jalapeno pepper, chopped

2 cups chicken stock

2 teaspoons paprika

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon dried oregano

2 tablespoons butter

Kosher salt, to taste

Lawry’s Season Salt, to taste

Cayenne pepper, to taste

Freshly cracked pepper, to taste

Scallions, freshly chopped

Hot sauce, optional


1. Cook rice according to package directions and allow to cool completely (better if rice was made the day before and refrigerated). Set aside.

2. In a large skillet, heat one tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. When it begins to smoke, add the ground beef, flattening the meat out onto the hot surface of the pan. Leave it alone to caramelize for a couple minutes, and then break it up into small pieces and stir to brown completely. Season to taste with Kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

3. In the same skillet, turn heat down to medium and add remaining oil. Add chopped onion, celery and peppers. Season with a pinch of kosher salt and saute until all the “veggies” soften and become slightly caramelized, about 5-7 minutes. Stir in paprika, garlic powder, thyme and oregano. Add a half-cup of stock, scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon, and then allow the liquids to boil and reduce away.

4. Next, add the cooled rice and cooked meat mixture into the skillet and stir well to combine. Stir in remaining stock and allow moisture to evaporate, stirring frequently. Stir in butter until melted. Season to taste with Lawry’s Season Salt, cayenne pepper and freshly cracked pepper. Garnish with chopped green onion. Serve with a vinegary hot sauce on the side for a bit of spicy tang.

Sharon Hughes is the advertising manager at The Times-Gazette. She is also a mother, grandmother and chef.

Sharon Hughes Staff columnmist Hughes Staff columnmist

This is a picture of the dirty rice Sharon and Ronnie Hughes made. is a picture of the dirty rice Sharon and Ronnie Hughes made. Sharon Hughes | The Times-Gazette