This is a best-self version of a classic recipe with plenty of flavor and zero complicating factors. It's a versatile side dish that I hope you'll build into your repertoire.
In a wide pan with a lid (like this one, this one, or this one), melt butter over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent and just starting to brown, about five minutes. While onion cooks, rinse rice in a fine-mesh sieve until the water runs clear and shake out any excess water.
Add garlic to pan and cook, stirring, until very fragrant, about a minute. Add rice and stir to coat with butter, then cook, stirring once or twice, for two minutes. Pour in stock and give it all a good stir. Bring to a boil over high heat. Then cover pan, lower heat to maintain a gentle simmer, and cook until broth is absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes.
Off the heat, place a clean kitchen towel between the pan and the lid to absorb excess steam and let pilaf rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle with chives and almonds if using and serve.
If you use salted butter and stock, you may not need additional salt. Just taste and adjust before serving.