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Stewed rice with pigeon peas
- 1 to 2 ounces of salt pork (washed under cold water and diced)
- 2 to 4 ounces of cooking ham or ham steak (washed under cold water and diced)
- 2 to 4 tablespoons of sofrito
- 1 can of gandules (they can also be found frozen or fresh in many produce stores)
- 3 tablespoons of olive oil
- 1 tablespoon of oregano
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1 dash of black pepper
- 3 tablespoons of tomato paste
- 4 cups of long-grain white rice (washed in cold water and drained)
- 5 cups of cold water
- Fry salt pork to a nice light golden brown.
- Remove salt pork and allow to drain on a paper towel.
- Drain and wash frying pan (use hot water only do not use soap).
- Return frying to stove add 1 tablespoon of olive oil bring up to heat and add the cooking ham.
- Lightly brown ham stirring making sure that it dose not burn or stick to the pan.
- Remove ham and set aside allow to drain on a paper towel.
- While the pan is still hot add the sofrito, there should be enough liquid from the sofrito to help you deglaze the pan.
- Use a spatula to scrape the bottom of the pan.
- Stir in the tomato paste and when it starts to bubble return the salt pork and cooking ham.
- Stir in the gandules ( if you are using from the can do not allow to cook just let them come up to temperature and then turn the burner off and set aside).
- If you plan to use the frozen or fresh gandules.
- Place them in a pot of cold lightly salted water bring to a boil and then lower heat and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes.
- Then drain and add them to the frying pan.
- In a large pot about 6 quart or larger add the ingredients from the frying pan.
- Bring up to heat and stir in rice.
- Make sure that the rice is well covered with the mixture from the frying pan.
- It should be a nice light red in color.
- Raise the heat to high and then add cold water.
- Add black pepper and oregano taste for salt add if needed.
- Once it come to a boil stir once more set burner to low.
- Cover the rice with the plantain leafs and cover pot.
- Allow to cook for 30 to 35 minutes ( do not remove cover) after the cooking time turn off burner and let sit for 15 minutes before you uncover the pot to serve.