Arroz con gandules is a traditional Puerto Rican dish specially cooked during the Christmas season. Being away from home after 5 months, already made me homesick. Since food is something very attached to our roots, I wanted to cook this traditional dish wish I couldn’t enjoy during the Christmas season because I couldn’t go to home.
The problem was that I had never cooked arroz con gandules and I didn’t know hot to do it. I had the opportunity to travel to see my uncle this year which has a lot of culinary skills and he taught me how to cook arroz con gandules. So back home, I was very excited to do this recipe for the first time and then been able to cook it at any time and even invite my friends to have a taste of Puerto Rican Food.
The most important ingredient, I may say for el arroz con gandules, is el sobresito sazón. The sazón is what will give that real Puerto Rican flavor and the unique orange-ish color to the rice. This dish is can take 30-45 mins to cooking. It requires a lot of love and time.
servings: about 4
1 cup rice
1 can 16oz gandules
1 sobre sazón
1/2 tsp garlic
1/2 tsp basil
1/4 tsp paprika
4 cups of water
*If desired you can add olives. They add a really good flavor. You can add them when the rice is cooking.*
1- First, start cooking the gandules. They have to be cooked in a stew style. In a big pot cook the gandules with the whole can of gandules, 2 cups of water and the sazón. Let it boil until the water has been absorbed but not completely.
2- Now, add the rice to the pot, the rest of the seasonings and 2 more cups of water. Let cook until the rice is tender and the water is fully absorbed.
3- The course is done! You can serve it with your choice. I served mine with tofu, amarillos, avocado, tomato and sauerkraut.