Friday, June 29, 2012

Recipe Card | by Kelly Cackin

photo by Tasty Tidbits
The second Recipe Card of the week features Spinach Parmesan Rice Bake, originally posted by user Kittencalskitchen.   

Yield: 8 servings
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • 1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach (cooked according to the package directions, then hand squeezed dry to remove excess moisture)
  • 2 cups cooked white rice (cooled), or 2 cups brown rice (cooled)
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, or 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese, or 2 cups Swiss cheese
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion or 2 large green onions, chopped
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 3/4 cup milk or 3/4 cup half-and-half cream
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, to taste (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • Seasoning salt, to taste
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, for topping
  • Grated mozzarella cheese

Set oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Generously grease 11 x 7-inch baking dish.  In a large bowl, combine all ingredients, mixing very well to combine.  Season with salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste.  Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish, then sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.  Bake (uncovered or covered) for 25 minutes, or until set.  Top with mozzarella cheese the last 5 minutes of baking. 

Have you tried this dish?  Give us your review in the Discussion Box below!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Save the Date! 2012 Rice Field Day | by Kelly Cackin

Well, it's that time again!  Valley Irrigation announces the 2012 Circles for Rice Field Day - here is your Save the Date!  This year, the event will be hosted at Dennis Robison's rice field in Neelyville, Missouri, USA.

Date: Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Location: (click to view map) Neelyville, Missouri, USA
  • Registration @ 8:00 AM (breakfast pastries and drinks will be available)
  • Program Begins @ 8:30 AM
  • Lunch On Us! @ Noon
    • Enjoy lunch with the Circles for Rice team and Field Day presenters
RSVP: This Field Day is open to the public, but we do ask that you RSVP by Monday, July 30, 2012, to help us plan Lunch On Us!  RSVP via:
Speakers Include:
  • Dennis Robison | Rice Farmer
  • Kelly Downing | Valley Irrigation
  • John Robison | Valley Irrigation
  • Fred Ferrell | Mid-Valley Irrigation
  • Marc Cummings | Consultant
  • Matt Rhine | University of Missouri Delta Research Center
Presentation Topics:
  • History of Pivot-Irrigated Rice
  • Pivot vs Flood Irrigated Rice
  • Pivot-Irrigated Rice Myths
  • Machine Requirements
  • Weed Control
  • Irrigation Scheduling
  • Fertility Management
  • Comments from the Farmer
  • Question and Answer
Remember to follow @ValleyPivots on Twitter for weekly updates on the rice under center pivot fields! We hope to see you in August!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Recipe Card | by Kelly Cackin

Well, we skipped this segment last week - so, we'll be posting 2 Recipe Cards this week!

One of this week's Recipe Cards features Indian Spiced Rice, originally posted by user Anu.  
Yield: 6 servings
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh gingeroot
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon red chili powder (or, to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 1/4 cups uncooked basmati rice or jasmine rice
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup dry lentils
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 medium potato, peeled and diced
  • 1 green bell pepper or red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 cup green peas
  • 3 tablespoons raisins
  • 1 tablespoon butter (optional)
In a large skillet or saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the onions, and cook, stirring frequently until they have softened.  Sprinkle in the ginger, garlic, cardamom, nutmeg, red chili powder, and cumin.  Cook for 3 minutes, stirring frequently.  Add the rice to the saucepan, and saute the rice with the spices for minutes, stirring constantly.  Add the lentils and salt into the saucepan.  Add 3 cups of water into the pan, stir.  Place the potatoes into the pan.  Bring the mixture to a boil, cover the pan, and turn the heat to low.  Cook for 10 minutes.  Place the bell pepper, peas, and raisins into the saucepan.  Stir well, then cover the pan again.  Cook for 10 minutes more, or until the rice, potatoes, and lentils are cooked.  Stir in the butter, if desired.  Serve hot.  Happy eating!

Once you try this recipe, let us know what you think!  Post your reviews in the Discussion Box below.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Circles for Rice Update | by Kelly Downing

Although I haven’t been able to visit any of our rice cooperators’ fields lately, I have been talking with the folks who have. Derrol Grymes, of RiceTec, visited Dean Schieffer’s farm today, near Bryan, Texas. As we have seen the past couple of weeks, Dean has a little weed pressure; there is a bit of fall panicum, but it is nearing the end of its growth stage, and we expect the rice to out - compete it for the rest of the season. You might remember there was a little bindweed (small-stem morning glory) in the field. They are preparing to apply a tank mix of Stam, Aim, and Storm. This is a bit tricky, since this rice field abuts some other crops, including grain sorghum and cotton. Even with the weed pressure, Derrol likes the look of the rice, so we will continue to monitor progress. 
In the Mid-South, our rice specialist John Robison has been checking fields weekly, and reports that the fields there all look very good. The rice is vigorous and seems to be tillering well. They have had a little rain the past week or two, which helps everybody. 
Dennis Robison and Chad Price, who have grown rice with pivots previously, are well into their irrigation programs, and applying a bit of fertilizer. Jeremy Baltz, as you recall, had a severe sandstorm right after planting (fortunately, prior to emergence), but since then the rice has grown well and looks good. Having a pivot has helped to control blowing sand since that early event, and his crop is growing well.
I don’t know about your part of the country, but this has been a warm, dry spring here in eastern Nebraska. We finally got a nice rain (2” – 3”) this weekend, and now it is in the 90s, so everything is growing fast. My wife’s garden is really producing—she has had bumper crops so far (radishes, lettuce, peas, cabbage) and the later stuff (sweet corn, green beans, tomatoes, potatoes, peppers) is really coming on, too. Unfortunately, the same goes for the grass in the lawn. Normally, out on our farm, we don’t have to mow much in the summer, but this big rain will keep us (okay, her) busy mowing for at least a couple of weeks!
As warm as it has been, I have to remind myself that, technically, summer hasn’t even begun yet! So, as we approach the beginning of the season, I hope your crops are doing well, and your weeds aren’t. Have a great (and safe) summer, and stay in touch.
We will be sure to post photos of the rice under center pivot fields when we can get them. I would also be interested in hearing how things are going with your crops—both flood and pivot-irrigated. How do things look in your neighborhood? Are there any particular problems that are unique this year?

Friday, June 15, 2012

Recipe Card | by Kelly Cackin

Because I'm in a sushi mood (I have leftovers from Blue Sushi in Omaha, NE, for lunch today!), this week's Recipe Card features Avocado and Vegetable Sushi, originally posted by user bearhouse5.  

photo by bearhouse5
Yield: 5 servings (10 4-inch rolls)
Preparation Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes

Basic Ingredients:
  • 5 sheets nori
  • 1 cup water
  • 8 teaspoons water
  • 2 cups sushi rice
  • 3 cups cold water
  • 5 1/3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Vegetable Rolls
    •  1 small carrot 
    • 4-inch pieces cucumbers 
    • Shiitake mushroom 
    • Sesame seed 
    • Vegan mayonnaise (optional) 
    • Gluten-free soy sauce, to serve
Avocado Rolls
  • 1 avocado 
    • Vegan mayonnaise (optional) 
    • 1/2 lemon


  1. In a saucepan, combine 3 cups cold water with 2 cups sushi rice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, then cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Do not lift the lid while cooking.
  2. Prepare seasonings and fillings while rice is cooking.
  3. Aim to have all the ingredients prepared and placed on separate plates and bowls ready to roll when the rice has been cooked and cooled. 
  4. In a small bowl, mix together the 4 tablespoons rice vinegar, 3 tablespoons sugar and 1/2 teaspoon salt. This will be used to season the rice.
  5. Sprinkle a large tray or platter with this water and rice vinegar solution. This will be used for cooling the rice.
  6. Peel and slice the avocado. Squeeze the juice from the lemon over the slices to prevent them from browning.
  7. Slice the carrots and cucumber into matchsticks. Slice the mushrooms.
  8. When the rice has cooked add the sugar, vinegar and salt mixture to the saucepan with the rice and gently stir through. You can buy special rice paddles for this purpose, but a spoon or fork will suffice - just be careful not to break up the grains.
  9. Place the rice onto the moistened tray or platter. Spread it out. Take a magazine, piece of cardboard or similar and fan the rice with it (as you would you face on a hot day). Turn the rice occasionally and continue fanning until the rice has cooled to around room temperature.
  10. To make your rolls, position your bamboo rolling mat so as to roll away from you. Place one sheet of nori on your mat, shiny side down.
  11. Dip your hands in the water and vinegar solution. Take a ball of rice (about 1 cup) and place on the nori. Spread the rice by patting it over the 3/4 of the nori closest to your body. The rice should be around 1/4 inch thick. Neaten the two edges of the rice that will be seen when the roll is finished. The 1/4 of the nori without the rice will be the section that seals the roll.
  12. Along the center of the rice place your fillings.
  13. Now start rolling. Lift the edge of the mat closest to you. You can use the mat to just start the roll, but you can also use the mat for the whole of the rolling process. Once the roll is started, pull back the mat and finish rolling (reasonably firmly) by hand, keeping the fillings tucked in as you go. Then, wrap the mat around the roll, and, with firm, even pressure, run your hands along the mat, thus creating an even and well sealed roll. If the roll doesn't seal completely, use a finger dampened in the water and rice solution to help it.
  14. Using a very sharp knife damped in the water and vinegar solution cut the rolls into the size desired - in half for longer rolls like those sold at many take away shops, or into 6 or 8 pieces for smaller servings.
  15. To make the nori less chewy, refrigerate the rolls. You can, however, eat them straight way. Serve with soy sauce and enjoy.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Recipe Card | by Kelly Cackin

This week's Recipe Card features Jasmine Rice with Caramelized Green Onions, originally posted by user Cookgirl.

Photo by mersaydees
Yield: 5 cups
Preparation Time: 0 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes

  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 1 cup jasmine rice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 2 cups chopped green onions, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon sambal oelek
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped roasted peanuts, salted or
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped roasted cashews
  • If necessary, lightly roast the peanuts or cashews and coarsely chop (do not grind).
  • Place water, jasmine rice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a rice cooker and cook until done.  Keep warm.
  • In a saute pan, heat up peanut oil on medium-low heat and saute green onion, garlic, and sambal oelek for about 2-3 minutes, or until softened.  Stir occasionally.
  • Increase saute pan heat to medium and add rice vinegar, sugar, and remaining salt.  Cook, stirring constantly until the mixture begins to caramelize, (3-4 minutes).  Do not burn!
  • Add the cooked jasmine rice and coarsely chopped nuts.  Mix well.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Press Release | Valley Irrigation Launches Mobile Website, Easier Access to Irrigation Information

Copyright Valmont Industries, Inc.
In order to continue to reach more audiences with product and application information, Valley Irrigation, the leader in precision irrigation, has launched a mobile version of its website, The site is intended to reach audiences utilizing small-screen mobile devices, such as Smartphones and some tablets. Valley Irrigation is the first center pivot irrigation company to launch a true mobile website.

“It’s no secret that mobile devices have become part of the standard communication strategy for many companies,” states Craig Malsam, VP Engineering and Marketing. “To better serve our customers, our mobile website offers ease of use to access product information, find a local Valley dealer, and quickly obtain valuable irrigation information from wherever they are with the use of their small-screen mobile device.”

The Valley Irrigation mobile website is intended to meet changing demographics and the need to access information in the palm of a hand. Recent research and observation show that the number of farmers investing in mobile devices increases every year. Of the 91% of farmers who own a mobile phone, 15% are Smartphone users; the adoption rate of Smartphones by farmers has increased by 11% since 2009, and is projected to keep increasing at a steady rate (Successful Farming, “Miscellaneous Technology 2012”). In addition to information on Valley brand equipment and a dealer locator, the Valley mobile website includes weather and agriculture market news.

To access the Valley Irrigation mobile website, visitors can navigate through both and domains from small-screen mobile devices.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Recipe Card | by Kelly Cackin

This week's Recipe Card features Old Fashioned Baked Rice Pudding, originally posted by user Bluenoser.

Photo by Redsie
Yield: 6 servings
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours

  • 1/2 cup rice
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tablespoon butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup raisins

Mix rice, milk,  water, butter, sugar, nutmeg, and salt.  Pour mixture into a greased casserole dish.  Bake at 300 degrees F for 1 hour.  Reduce oven heat to 250 degrees F for 1 1/2 hours.  30 minutes before the timer goes off, add raisins, and finish baking.  Enjoy!