There are many versions of Mexican rice on the Internet but through trial and error I boiled it down to a version that suits me and my family needs the best. The standard ingredients of this dish are medium or long grain rice (such as basmati), onions, garlic, vegetable oil (usually corn) or lard, tomatoes or a tomato sauce (or both), salt and cumin. Sometimes people add jalapeno, green peas, celery, or even a cilantro or parsley, but the main notes of taste of the Mexican rice it nevertheless tomatoes, onions, garlic and cumin, the rest is unessential.
For two cups of dry rice you will need about 4-5 table spoons corn oil, 1 large chopped onion (about ¾ cup), 3-4 minced garlic cloves, 2 cups of a broth (chicken, beef or vegetable; you can use canned broth but never dry bouillon cubes, they taste nasty), about 2 cups crushed fresh seeded and skinned fresh tomatoes or good canned tomatoes or 1 cup of crushed tomatoes and 1 cup of tomato juice (I use V8), about 2 tea spoons of salt and one teaspoon of cumin (or two if you really like cumin aroma). You can also add 1-2 table spoons of chopped cilantro.
Wash rice with cold water and allow to drain for 10-15 minutes.
Heat corn oil n a thick-walled saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and sauté for about 5 minutes or until it becomes translucent. Add rice and sauté stirring until rice turns golden brown which takes about 10-12 minutes. Add minced garlic and cook stirring constantly until fragrant 1-2 minutes more.
Add broth, crushed tomatoes and tomato juice if using, salt, cumin and chopped cilantro, stir and bring to boiling. Reduce heat to a light simmer, and then cover the pot. Cook for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let stand 10 minutes without disturbing.
Fluff the rice with a fork and serve.
See step-by-step photos in Russian version of the recipe: