Peas and Rice Bahamian Style
What is Caribbean Peas and Rice
Peas and rice, is a stable in the Bahama Islands. My father is from Nassau, and he taught my mother to cook, just like a Bahamian. My Mom was the best cook in the world! I remember when I first heard my mother tell me, she was going to make pigeon peas and rice, I though it had pigeons in it.
Pigeon peas, are just a bean or pea type legume used in Caribbean, West Indian and Spanish cooking. Usually when you hear about this dish, it is just referred to as, peas and rice.
Jamaican peas and rice is made with kidney beans and coconut milk. We do not use coconut milk in our recipe.
In Spanish, the are called gandules! Peas and rich are a staple in the islands, just like potatoes and rice are here in the states.
I have tasted pigeon peas and rice the Spanish way and the Caribbean way and they are both simply delicious. Whenever I go home, I can always find a pot on the stove ready to eat. The recipe is pretty simple and the rewards are many.
I learned how to make this by watching my parents prepare it for special holidays, when I was a little girl. I still don't think mine ever comes out as good as theirs, but I always get compliments on my peas and rice.
You may want to know what you eat with peas and rice. You can eat just about anything with them. They are an easy dish to prepare and you can impress you friends with Caribbean side dish!
Pigeon peas may not be sold in every market, but try looking for it in the the Spanish foods section of your store. You should be able to find the Goya brand of pigeon peas (gandules).
- 3 pieces of cooked bacon
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves
- green bell pepper
- 1 can tomato sauce
- A little tomato paste
- 1 can pigeon peas, drained
- teaspoon fresh thyme
- seasoning salt and pepper to taste
- 1 can chicken broth
- 3 cups water
- 2 teaspoon Worcester Sauce
- 2 cups uncooked rice
- 1 Bay leaf
- Two cups of rice
Start by frying the cutting into small pieces and frying it. You don't want big hunks of bank in the dish. The back rendering is all the oil you need for this dish.
Once the bacon is done, add the green pepper and cook until the green pepper gets soft. Next add the onions and sauté until they are translucent.
Lastly, add the chopped garlic. You will add he garlic last to make sure it does not burn. If garlic overcooks it becomes bitter and can ruin the dish.
Next, add the chicken stock, tomato sauce, tomato paste, water, Worcester Sauce, thyme, bay leaf and other dry spices.
Allow the mixture to simmer about ten minutes and then drain and add the peas. Let the mixture simmer for another ten minutes and then add the rice.
Cover the pot and don't stir, but allow to cook until almost done. Remove pot from burner. Let the rice to continue to cook until done. It is better to undercook a little then to over cook.
Step Three - Serving
Once the peas and rice are done and put into an attractive serving dish. Our family serves pigeon peas and rice every,
Thanksgiving but you can serve with fish, chicken, beef or anything your desire. If you want to make it a Caribbean meal, serve it with jerk or stewed chic,ken and a nice salad.
Pigeon peas may not be sold in every market, but try looking for it in the the Spanish foods section of your store. You should be able to find the Goya brand of pigeon peas (gandules)..