This recipe for arroz con carne de cerdo comes from the Puerto Rican kitchen of architect Artemio Paz, Jr. of Springfield, Oregon. His mother, Marfa Rosa Carballo de Paz, who was born in Vega Baja, Perto Rico, taught him how to cook this delicious dish. Growing up in New York City, Anemio vividly recalls the aroma of the grain boiling in Chicken broth that greeted him each day after school. On weekdays his mother would dress the rice with little more than onion or garlic, but on Sundays and holidays she would add pork, chicken, or vegetables, and capers or green olives, and green peppers to the dish, as her grandmother had shown her.
Today Anemio and his wife, Edana Paz often serve Arroz con carne de cerdo, which they affectionately call Grandma's Rice, making it with olive oil instead of the traditional bacon to brown the onions, garlic, and green pepper. Anemio and Edana Paz ritually serve Spanish Rice with Pork at holiday meals, along with a dish of garbanzo beans and potatoes and a sweet bread.
Traditional Puerto Rican arroz con carne de cerdo is similar to Dominican arroz con carne de cerdo--pork with rice flavored with bacon, green olives, hot pepper, capers, and parsley; Peruvian arroz con chancho-pork and rice spiced with ground annatto and hot red chiles and studded with peas; and Brazilian arroz con porco-rice and pork embellished with ham, bell peppers, hot chiles, garlic, and cilantro. Like the Paz family's Spanish Rice with Pork, all of these dishes have undergone a transformation in Latin American communities across America.
Preparation Time:45 min
Cooking Time:45 min
|1||Pound(lb)||lean boneless pork loin, cut into 1inch cubes|
|1||large yellow onion, peeled and finely minced|
|1/2||Cup(c)||diced green bell pepper|
|2||large cloves garlic, peeled and minced|
|2||Cup(c)||long-grain white rice|
|4||Cup(c)||hot homemade or canned chicken broth|
|1/2||Cup(c)||canned tomato sauce|
|2 1/2||pimiento-stuffed green olives, or 1/3 cup capers, drained|
|salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste|
|1/2||Cup(c)||finely minced fresh parsley, for garnish|
Saute the pork in 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat, turning several times, until cooked on the outside, about 10 minutes. Remove the pork to a plate with a slotted spoon. Add the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil to the pan juices. Saute the minced onions, bell pepper, and garlic in the oil over medium heat until the onions are golden brown, about 8 minutes.
Add the rice and saute it, stirring, for 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the chicken broth and tomato sauce, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat, add the sauteed pork, cover, and simmer until the rice is tender, and all the liquid has been absorbed, about 25 minutes. Stir in the green olives or capers, and salt and black pepper to taste, keeping in mind that the olives are salty. Serve at once, garnished with parsley.