This recipe of white long grain rice with a can of green pigeon peas is delicious. Pigeon peas have a lot of flavor and mixed with rice is the perfect combination. This classic Caribbean and Panamanian rice is what I usually serve for holidays and celebrations to keep my traditions. Just pair with some sweet plantains, a protein side dish, and a simple salad.
Have you cooked with pigeon peas before? I have made this recipe with coconut milk but this is the simple version made with water. Check out the picture of how pigeon peas look like in this other post.
You have to taste this rice with a saucy stew and a fresh salad. It is a brilliant combination. In my house, I cook this rice frequently especially for the holidays or when I prepare a meat or vegetable stew.
Here is a simple salad of iceberg lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, and shredded carrots. I love the crunchy flavor of iceberg lettuce! Prepare a salad dressing on the side with extra virgin olive oil, white or red wine vinegar, salt, and black pepper.
As you know, I am all about homemade foods as much as possible. However, in some cases frozen and canned ingredients are your friends.
Since I am nowhere near fresh pigeon peas, I rely on canned versions. They are still delicious but if you ever have the opportunity to try a fresh pigeon peas rice dish, go for it.
That crust that is built on the bottom of the pot is my favorite, it is crunchy and tasty and it will soak up the flavor of any sauce.
There are so many ways to make this rice with pigeon peas and this is a no-fuss version where I don’t have to keep an eye on the rice too much.
In Panamá, it is common to add more water to the rice, such as per every cup of rice, add 2 cups of water. I prefer to use less water to make sure the bottom of the rice gets crusty and crunchy.
The other difference is that the rice in Panamá is usually cooked uncovered until the water has evaporated and then you cover the pot. I prefer to cover the pot as soon as it starts boiling to not have to stay there watching the rice.
If you prepare this recipe, let me know what you think. I can’t wait for you to try.
Rice with Pigeon Peas (Vegetarian)
- 1/4 onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 tbsp. cilantro, chopped (or culantro, chopped)
- 1 tbsp. oil
- 2 cups long-grain white rice, rinsed, and drained
- 1 can (15 ounces) pigeon peas, do not drain
- 1 tsp. fine salt
- 2 cups water
- In a saucepan (with cover), heat oil on medium heat. Sauté onion, garlic, and cilantro until soft and translucent.
- Add pigeon peas and cook for about 2 minutes with the vegetables. Add rice and mix well. Add salt.
- Add water and mix well. Taste the liquid and check if it needs more salt. Bring to a boil.
- Once it boils, cover and cook on low for 30 minutes. Do not peak to look until after 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, uncover and with a fork fluff the top of the rice. Cover and continue to cook for another 5 to 10 minutes. It will be ready to serve. You can move the bottom of the rice with a spoon to check if you have crusty rice on the bottom.