Friday, March 23, 2012

Cuban Rice "Moros y Cristianos" - Caity

We had a sunny day in Portland (insert gasp here!). With the good weather I was inspired to make something that reminded me of summer. This past summer, I became mildly obsessed with Cuban food after eating at the Cuban restaurant, Alma de Cuba, in Philadelphia, PA. I'm salivating just thinking about it! We had perfect empanadas to start with, then delicious Latin cheese bread served with green sauce. For dinner, I ordered the crispy pork served with sour orange mojo (and a mojito of course!). Needless to say, I was hopelessly addicted.  

I searched Powell's bookstore in Portland for a suitable Cuban cookbook and came across "Eat Cuban", by Andy Rose and Judy Bastyra which has made me a VERY happy girl.  Inside is a recipe for Cuban rice called "Moros y Cristianos", which in English is "Moors and Christians". The rice has black beans mixed in with the white rice. I'll let you use your imagination as to why they called it that.......... and now I'll tell you.

Moros y Cristianos is the national dish of Cuba and it refers to the Medieval times in Spain when the Moors (Muslims) and the Christians were living together before the Spanish Inquisition. This recipe is incredibly addicting and very satisfying in all sorts of weather; especially warm weather.

I strongly advise having a mojito while cooking this... and another one while eating it. Enjoy!

one year ago: Paprika Shrimp Pasta

what you'll need:

1-1/2 cups uncooked long grain rice
3-4 strips thick bacon (I like Daily's bacon)
A good handful of fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
3/4 to 1 can of unseasoned black beans
1 small onion, or 1/2 large onion chopped
olive oil
salt and pepper

Cook the rice according to the directions on the package.

When the rice is almost done, chop the bacon into smaller bits. For being so delicious, bacon sure is creepy raw... 

Drain the canned beans but do NOT wash the beans.

Heat 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil in a large pan and add the bacon bits. Fry until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Fight the urge to discard the fat/oil from the pan. This is where the flavor comes from. Everything will be okay!

Reduce the heat to low, add the chopped onion and cook for another 5 minutes until the onions are soft and translucent.

Then stir in the rice and beans. Season with salt and pepper and cook for a few more minutes until heated through. Serve in a bowl with the chopped cilantro and a drizzle of olive oil.

Try serving with roast chicken or pan fried pork chops... and a mojito please!

one year ago: Paprika Shrimp Pasta

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