Moro de Guandules con Coco (Rice, Pigeon Peas and Coconut)

Moro de Guandules con Coco Recipe (Rice, Pigeon Peas & Coconut): and amazing disth that comes from Samana and happily adopted by all Dominicans.

I was 12, and I fell in love. It was all new to me and I was smitten: I ate moro de guandules con coco for the first time.

It was my first trip to Samaná, and I remember with a smile the horror on my brother’s face when he found out that the food contained coconut. Madness! Coconut doesn’t belong in savory dishes!

Or does it?

Moro de Guandules con Coco Recipe (Rice, Pigeon Peas & Coconut): and amazing disth that comes from Samana and happily adopted by all Dominicans.

But let’s take a second to talk about guandules (pigeon peas).

With the possible exception of Puerto Rico (where it’s called gandules) no other nation seems to appreciate this legume like Dominicans do. It is found, fresh, dried and canned in every supermarket, market and corner store, its smoky taste well-loved by Dominicans of all walks of life. And while beans (red kidney, cranberry or pinto) are king here, pigeon peas are a special treat. There is not a corner of our Republic where guandules are not known.

Moro de Guandules con Coco Recipe (Rice, Pigeon Peas & Coconut): and amazing disth that comes from Samana and happily adopted by all Dominicans.

But in Samaná somebody (or possibly several somebodies) had a struck of genius: to combine pigeon peas with coconut. This is possibly a natural progression from the fact that Samaná is covered from corner to corner with coconut groves. Coconut in all its incarnations is enjoyed in the beautiful bay.

From Samaná we also received the gifts of guandules con coco, pescado con coco, pan de coco and several other dishes containing the fruit from the noble tree.

Moro de Guandules con Coco Recipe (Rice, Pigeon Peas & Coconut): and amazing disth that comes from Samana and happily adopted by all Dominicans.

This dish is full of flavor and the buttery goodness of coconut. It is an obligatory addition to any special meal Dominican-style. It is also part of our traditional Dominican Christmas dinner.

Buen provecho!

Aunt Clara

Moro de Guandules con Coco (Rice, Pigeon Peas and Coconut) Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Moro de Guandules con Coco Recipe (Rice, Pigeon Peas & Coconut): and amazing disth that comes from Samana and happily adopted by all Dominicans.
Author:
Serves: 6 porciones
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon of finely chopped cilantro
  • ¼ cup of chopped celery
  • ⅛ cup of capers (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon mashed garlic
  • 12 pitted olives cut into halves (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon of thyme leaves
  • ¼ cup of chopped cubanelle or bell peppers (1 pepper, aprox)
  • 1 pinch of oregano
  • 1½ teaspoon of salt
  • 3 cups of boiled green pigeon peas
  • 3½ cups water
  • ½ cup of tomato sauce
  • 2 cups of coconut milk
  • 4 cups of rice
Instructions
  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a 1½ gl [6 lt] iron pot and add the cilantro, celery, capers, garlic, olives, thyme, peppers, oregano and salt and cook and stir for a minute. Add the peas, also while stirring. Once well heated, add water, tomato sauce and coconut milk and bring to a boil.
  2. Stir in rice and simmer over medium heat, stirring regularly and removing as much as you can of the rice that sticks to the bottom. When all the water has evaporated cover with a tight-fitting lid and simmer over very low heat. Wait 15 minutes, uncover, stir in the remaining oil. Move the rice from the bottom to the top so it cooks uniformly. Cover again and simmer another 5 minutes.
  3. Uncover and taste. The rice should be firm but tender inside. If necessary, cover and leave another 5 minutes on very low heat.
  4. Serve warm with meat or fish of your choice.

    Moro de guandules con coco (Rice, pigeon peas and coconut)

Comments

  1. maria orlotti

    I love ur recipes,they are great! specially for people that are learning how to cook, YOU PUT EVERYTHING WITH DETAILS, that is important so the dish come to a perfection! thanks so much for sharing with us !

  2. Margie

    This recipe was okay at the least. I’m Puerto Rican so I make a similar dish, arroz con gandules, which, I think, has more depth in flavors. And PRs use “sofrito” which negates the need to use some of the ingredients in your recipe. But I’d make this again just to change things up because I love using coconut milk when I cook & also because I enjoy trying other kinds of Latin cuisine. One comment, though, is the organization of your ingredient list. Ingredients should be listed in the order that they’re used in a recipe. It was a bit difficult following the recipe when the list differed from the order they were used in the instructions. But many of your recipes sound delicious & I look forward to trying them. I’ve tried one of your baked chicken recipes which came out delicious! Thanks for sharing!

    • Ann

      I agree and I used half the amount of rice. I’d make it again but increase the ingredients that give it flavor.

    • Thanks, Margie. I have changed the order of the ingredients, some of the recipes are older, and they were organized in order of importance of the ingredients. Newer recipes are organized in order of use.

      I do not use industrial-made seasonings, if I can avoid it. The tomato sauce already has some seasoning to it (notice the link), but some people are used to the stronger flavor of prepared seasonings, I am more of the school of fresh ingredients and letting the main ingredient shine. Of course readers are free to change recipes to adapt to their taste, if they know what they’re doing.

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