In this uncertain time of coronavirus, one thing remains the same: cooking is one way to bring order and comfort, into our lives. Belizean’s favorite comfort food? The all-loved “Sunday Dinna” rice and beans special. More specifically, with stewed chicken, potato salad, and perfectly-caramelized ripe plantain. Onion sauce with habanero too, if you’re feeling for a kick. This Sunday may be a little different from your usual routine given the circumstances, but a comforting plate of Belizean rice and beans is sure to bring a little normalcy.
As we push through another week of quarantine and curfew, there’s plenty to miss. Of that, maybe your mother’s cooking or a local street vendor whose rice and beans may be extraordinary compared to most. Thanks to the Flavors of Belize Cookbook, you can make your own rice and beans for a Sunday dinna while staying at home! What Belizean recipes would you like to see next? Let us know in the comments below. We’re here with you, and we’re here for you.
- 1/2 cup onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup stewed beans (kidney or red beans)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon thyme or 2 thyme leaves
- 2 cups white rice, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup coconut milk or 1 packet coconut milk powder (unsweetened)
- 1 cup water
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons diced cilantro
- 3 lbs chicken parts
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon chicken consumme powder
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon thyme
- 1 teaspoon complete seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil
- 3/4 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon red recado, dissolved in warm water
- 1/4 cup onion, diced
- 1/4 cup green bell pepper, diced
- 1 teaspoon cilantro, diced
From first bunch of ingredients, sauté onions and garlic in coconut oil until fragrant. Add stewed beans along with its liquid, and season with salt, pepper, thyme. Stir in rice, coconut milk, and water. Cover and cook on medium heat for 15 minutes, or until water is absorbed. Reduce to a simmer. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup water, cover, and continue cooking for 10 minutes or until rice is tender and fluffy.
While the rice is cooking, season chicken with half of the recado and remaining dry ingredients. Marinate for 30 minutes, and up to overnight. Heat coconut oil and sugar until bubbling, then add chicken and sauté until golden brown. Add diluted recado, onions, green pepper, and cilantro. Add water to just cover the chicken, and simmer over medium heat for 25-30 minutes.
Recipe adapted from Flavors of Belize: The Cookbook. Serve with coleslaw or potato salad, and baked or fried ripe plantain.