Saffron rice, basic recipe (arroz amarillo, receta básica)

Cooking instructions: 

Put the oil into a pot; add the finely chopped garlic and onion, the cumin and the tomato sauce and saute until the onion looks golden. Add the rice and stir for a few minutes, add the stock and the bay leaf, stir well. Stir in the salt, place the peppers, clean and chopped, over the stock and cover.

Cook over medium heat until it comes to a boil, stir, lower the heat and simmer until the rice is very tender and still looks wet. Stir and turn the heat off. Let cool covered.

This rice is served slightly soppy. While cooking, you may add bits of the chicken, pork, fish, seafood or vegetables already used to make the stock, which is an important part of this recipe. This will give your rice the final flavor.

For a little extra, you may also add as part of the basic recipe, at the time of lowering the heat, some green peas giving the rice a nice appearance and a very special flavor.

Okra rice (Arroz con quimbombo)

Cooking instructions: 

You can use the okra whole or sliced. Remove the tip and the small stem.

Toss the okra into the water or the stock with lemon. Make a sauce with the lard, the onion, the garlic, the green pepper, the parsley, the tomato sauce and the ham or any other kind of recommended meat.

Add the dry wine, the salt and the pepper. Then stir in the drained okra and saute for 2 or 3 minutes.

Add the water or the stock with annatto and, when it comes to a boil, add the rice, rinsed if necessary. Cover and cook over medium heat until the rice is tender.

Chicken rice La Chorrera (arroz con pollo a La Chorrera)

Cooking instructions: 

Cut the chicken up in eights and fry it in hot oil. Then, using the same oil, make a sauce with the onions, the parsley, the garlic and the tomatoes.

Add the stock and let it boil for some minutes until the chicken is tender.

Add the wine, the salt, the saffron, the cumin, the pepper and the water from the sweet red peppers, the green peas and the asparagus.

Let it boil and add the rice. Cook for about 30 minutes over low heat or in the oven at 400ºF for the same amount of time or until the rice is soft.

Pork rice (Arroz con carne de puerco)

Cooking instructions: 

Cube the meat into 5 or 6 cm. bits and marinate it in the crushed garlic cloves, the salt, the Seville orange or lemon juice, the oregano, the cumin and the pepper.

Keep it in the marinade for about 2 hours in the refrigerator; then cook it along with all the marinade ingredients and when it dries, add a couple of spoonfuls water to let the meat shed some fat (it must shed almost 3 tablespoons of fat, but if it doesn't, add oil or lard to reach that amount) and use it for the sauce adding the onion, the green pepper and the seedless chopped tomatoes.

Cook for about 5 minutes, add the rest of the water and let it boil for approx. 15 additional minutes or until the meat is just a little tender.

Add the saffron or annatto diluted in some water, the rice (after washing it if necessary) and cook covered over medium heat for 30 minutes in a traditional pot or 10 minutes in a pressure cooker.

Codfish rice (Arroz con bacalao)

Cooking instructions: 

Soak the codfish for a couple of hours in water enough to cover it.

Shred into large pieces and saute in hot oil.

Grind the onion, the pepper, the parsley and the peeled garlic. Toss in the codfish and add the tomato sauce (if you are using fresh tomatoes, chop them well and take out the seeds); add the wine and let it boil for 2 or 3 minutes.

Then add the 2 cups of water used to soak the codfish; when it comes to a boil, stir the rice in (washed if necessary).

Keep it cover over medium heat until the grain opens and the rice begins to look dry, lower the heat and simmer, always covered, for 5 or 10 minutes.

Squid rice (Arroz con calamares)

Cooking instructions: 

Sauté the onion, the garlic and the parsley in hot oil.

Add the squids, the water or stock, the wine, the salt and the ground pepper. When it comes to a boil, add the rice (washed if necessary).

Cook covered over medium heat, until the grains are soft and the rice looks dry.

Lower the heat and simmer until the time of serving.

If you prefer lighter colored rice, add to the sauce 1 small can of sweet red peppers, ground them and add the liquid from the pepper can to the rice to replace some of the stock. The stock used in this recipe must be from lean white fish, not an oily one.

If you are using fresh squids, prepare them just like squids in ink.

After adding the tomato sauce, the salt and the spices, add the ink with 2 cups of water. When the broth comes to a boil, stir in 1 ½ cup of rice and cook over medium heat for about ½ an hour or until the rice is soft.

Clam rice (Arroz con Almejas)

Cooking instructions: 

Rinse the clams in hot water. Then, rinse them several times, under strong running water if possible, to wash all the sand out.

Heat the oil and saute the finely chopped onion, the crushed garlic, the pepper and the parsley.

Add the tomato sauce, the salt and the clams (don't stir excessively to avoid breaking the shells). It is better to shake the pot instead.

Add the stock and the wine. Bring to a boil and then stir in the rice and the spices lightly browned and crushed.

Let it boil, covered, over high heat until the rice grains begin to open, then lower the heat and allow it to simmer until the rice is tender.

Chicken rice

Cooking instructions: 

Make a good stock with the chicken giblets, including the neck, the wings and the legs.

Quarter the chickens and marinate them in the crushed garlic and the lemon, Seville orange or grapefruit juice.

Heat the oil and brown the chicken quarters in it, then add the finely chopped onion and pepper, the tomato sauce (or the fresh tomatoes seedless and also finely chopped), the liquid from the tinned peppers, green peas and asparagus (grossly this shouldn't exceed 1 cup), the salt, the pepper, the bay leaf and the saffron or annatto to color it up; pour the stock and the wine in.

When it all comes to a boil, lower the heat and when the chickens are a little tender, add the rice after rinsing it if necessary.

Keep it covered and simmering until the grains are open and the rice is soft, but not altogether dry.

Add the green peas, garnish with peppers and asparagus and serve immediately.

Rice Pudding (Arroz con leche)

Cooking instructions: 

Cook the rice in the water with the lemon peel and the cinnamon stick until the rice is tender. Add the milk, the salt and the sugar. Reduce heat and simmer until it thickens, for approximately one hour. Stir from time to time so as not to let it stick to the bottom of the pot. Put it into serving dishes and garnish with ground cinnamon.

Congrí rice (Arroz Congrí)

Cooking instructions: 

Wash the black beans, previously picked, and place them over the fire in a pressure cooker with plenty of water, covering the beans completely, put on the pressure valve and leave for 30 to 40 minutes. Let cool, uncover the pot and make sure the grains are tender. Separate the grains from the stock and put the stock aside. Let cool the bean grains.

Put the onion and garlic finely chopped, the peppers cut into thin strips and the oregano into a pot and saute in hot oil until the onion is golden. Add the bean stock, the grains, the rice, the bay leaf and the salt. Cover.

Place the pot over medium heat until it comes to a boil, stir to prevent from sticking to the bottom of the pot, and keep cooking over low heat, until the rice looks completely dry. This process of drying the rice should take from 10 to 15 minutes. Stir again, remove from heat and let cool before serving.