Arroz con gandules or pigeon peas rice is a staple in a Puerto Ricans diet. It’s considered a Christmas dish ,or important for any special ocassion, however; we make it all throughout the year. It is the star of our get- togethers usually accompanied by roasted pork, ‘pasteles’ or ‘guineitos in escabeche. Today, I’ll share my recipe with you, I hope you enjoy!
Arroz con Gandules
Yields: 4-6 servings
2 cups long grain rice ( or your preferred rice)
2 cans of gandules or 2 lbs of gandules boiled until soft(do not drain)
3 tablespoons annatto seed oil, or canola oil
1/2 cup cooking ham (york ham)
1/2 cup pork chunks
3 tablespoons of sofrito
1/2 tsp of freshly ground oregano
-1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
-1/4 cup of olives
-1/4 cup tomato sauce
– 2 cups of water ( more or less depending on the grain of rice being used)
– salt and pepper to taste
– 1 red pepper
-cilantro or culantro ( desired amount)
– 1/2 packet of Sazón with culantro and achiote
Brown the peices of pork meat for about 7 minutes, then add pieces of ham. Incorporate all the ingredients including the liquid and cook for a few minutes. Add the rice and season to desired taste, and stir. When the water begins to evaporate, mix well. Finally, at the red pepper cut into strips over the rice. Cover the rice and reduce to medium low heat.
Note: If you want to add a little more flavor to your arroz con gandules you can grate half a plantain to the mixture at the beginning of the procedure. You can also add a plantain leaf. You first have to wash it really well, and place over a hot surface, or stove burners to intensify and seal in the flavor.