Rice Pilaff is what I made before I knew about risotto. The only real difference in the recipe is the cooking method, and of course the final result. Rice pilaff is a lower maintenance rice dish that cooks fluffy and tasty every time.
All you need for a simple pilaff is:
1 cup long grain rice
2 cups chicken stock (use vegetable stock for vegetarian dish)
1 clove garlic
1 medium size onion diced
2 tbsp butter (an a bit of oil so the butter doesn't burn)
S&P to taste
In a large skillet heat oil and butter together. Add onion and saute until translucent. Add rice and saute until evenly coated in butter, then add the stock and bring to a soft boil. Meanwhile lightly grease a baking dish and crush the garlic. Combine garlic and rice mixture in baking dish, cover tightly with foil and then place in oven for 40 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork, taste and add S&P.
* Little trick * If you have a glass baking dish you can see when the liquid is absorbed so that you don't lower the temperature of your oven by opening it often.
This works as a great weekday side dish. There are many add-ins and variations you can do with this, like adding peas or your favourite vegetable. Enjoy.