Heat oil on medium heat in a skillet
Add rice, onion, and bell pepper, and brown. Careful not to let it burn!
Blend tomatoes and spices in a blender. It should measure 1 cup of liquid.
Add hot water and blend again.
Add liquid mixture to rice and stir.
Return to a boil for 30 seconds.
If desired, add peas and carrots at this time.
Stir only once or twice only.
Cover skillet with a tight-fitting lid.
Reduce heat to low and cook for 15 minutes. Do not uncover skillet.