Arroz blanco (White rice)

Arroz blanco (White rice)

I like to think I’m a pretty good cook. But it wasn’t always so… At the debut of my marital career I was only 23 and my recipe repertoire consisted of little more than grilled cheese sandwiches, toasted marshmallows, and the quintessential Kraft Dinner.

To complicate things further, I was in Sosúa. Foreign food names and oddly shaped pots and pans, teetering dangerously on uneven stovetops, were hindrances to say the least. But the idea of one all-important comida every day — day after day, 7 days a week — was absolutely daunting. And the staple of this daily meal? My new nemesis — El Arroz.

White rice (arroz blanco)

Never having been a big rice-eater before, and much less a big rice-cooker, I observed the process many, many times before making my first foray into this uncharted territory. I bowed before my comadres, who never failed to please. Their rice was always firm, and yet at the same time enticingly tender. The grains were never bland or pasty, and they unfailingly produced the popular film of concón: the truest symbol of a successful arroz.

Arroz blanco (White rice)

My own efforts were completely and sadly inconsistent. Sometimes soupy, sometimes crunchy – my making rice was a veritable caja de sorpresas for everyone involved. An epic battle was thus waged on my part to master my rice-to-water ratio, and to perfect the placement of my funda plástica on my olla.

Repollo guisado (Cabbage stew)

After various episodes of giving up (and one very poorly received supper of Rice-A-Roni, sponsored by the makers of What Was I Thinking?®), a magical occurrence took place. With my giant metal spoon in hand, I peeled the plastic bag from the pot. Wondrously, I didn’t scald my face with the rush of steam. A good omen. There it was in all its glory. Birds chirped happily in the background and the Gods of Cereals smiled down. My rice glistened, was perfectly chewable, and tasted good.

Arroz blanco (White rice)

“Ya te puedes casar*”, said my long-suffering husband. Um, gee, thanks. Thanks a lot. I just may do that.

*”You can get married”

Arroz blanco (White rice)

Jill Wyatt

Jill, a member of our original team (where we knew her as Aunt Jane), and contributor to our book, is Canadian, mom to two Canadian-Dominican boys and resided in the Dominican Republic for several years.

Arroz blanco (White rice)

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 4 generous servings

Arroz blanco (White rice)

Arroz Blanco is the base of most Dominican lunch menus, one of the components of La Bandera Dominicana, and the ultimate test of the good Dominican cook.

The perfectionists will strive for a tender "arroz graneado" (loose) and a thin and crispy "concón".

Ingredients

  • 4 cups of rice
  • 6 cups water
  • 5 tablespoons of oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon of salt

Instructions

  1. Heat up half the oil and all the salt in a 1.5 qrt (aprox) cast iron or aluminum pot.
  2. Add the water, being careful with splatters.
  3. Rinse the rice in running water, drain well (optional, I don't do it).
  4. Bring to a boil and then add the rice, stirring regularly to avoid excessive sticking.
  5. When all the water has evaporated cover with a tight fitting lid and simmer over very low heat.
  6. Wait 15 minutes and remove lid, add the remaining oil, stir and cover again.
  7. In 5 minutes uncover and taste, the rice should be firm but tender inside.
  8. If necessary, cover and simmer for another 5 minutes over very low heat.
  9. Serve with meat, (or seafood) a side dish and beans.
http://www.dominicancooking.com/516-arroz-blanco-white-rice.html

Get new recipes and updates in your inbox.

CommentLuv badge

{ 20 comments… add one }

  • Ron March 15, 2011, 3:46 PM

    What are the etymology and literal translation of the term "concón," please? What is the best way to clean a stainless steel pan of this crust? Thank you!

    • Aunt Clara March 16, 2011, 5:56 AM

      Ah, etymology, one of my favorite subjects. Unfortunately I have no idea when it comes to that particular word, and a quick perusal of Diccionario de Dominicanismos by Carlos E. Deive sheds no light on the mistery. As for literal translation, there is none. A loose approximation would be "Dominican crispy rice", but that is just me. I am not a linguist, neither do I play one on the internet. :)

  • Angi March 23, 2011, 9:49 AM

    Gracias por esta receta, la verdad a veces me queda un poco duro el arroz, pero veo que es porque lo destapo antes de los 15 minutos para voltearlo, pero seré paciente y esperaré el tiempo recomendado ;)

  • Lindsey May 16, 2011, 12:18 PM

    "Concon"- when I try to explain in english, everyone seems to understand when I say "burned rice". :)

    Thanks for the recipes. Love them.

    • Aunt Clara February 21, 2012, 8:19 PM

      If it is burned then it wasn't done rice. It is more like toasted, or crispy.

  • Corey June 2, 2011, 11:09 AM

    We could cook this the same way with brown rice can't you?

    • Aunt Clara February 21, 2012, 8:20 PM

      Time and water to rice ratio is vastly different when cooking brown rice. I may have to write a recipe for that (and probably will in the future).

  • Alejandro June 6, 2011, 12:00 PM

    ooh gossh the first time i had "concon" was at my girlfriend's house her mom made the food, so im there and they have the concon on a smaller bowl so im like curious what are they putting on their rice :) i want to try it too. i looked at it, it looked like spices lets go for it to my surprise it was burnt rice i was like that the hell lol. i looked at them and say hmmm its good lol what a lie not my cup of tea lol but the food was great.

  • Nichole March 4, 2012, 9:25 PM

    how many does this make for?

  • ANTON PABLO HANDAL March 9, 2012, 7:03 PM

    Hi

    I will try to cook this recp. I lived in Dom. Rep. for 17 yrs, you did good job in collecting all these recp.

    Thanks.

    In Sacramento is not easy to find all Dom. spices, I was in NY 2 months ago and I visted supermarkets in Manhattan, arround 181 street, is like you live IN Dominican Rep., and I bought some of these spices,

  • Nequan Bell April 9, 2012, 11:01 AM

    What brand of rice do you recommend using? I had fallen in love with Arroz Rico but my local grocery store no longer carries this brand. *sad face*

    • Aunt Clara April 9, 2012, 12:11 PM

      Any brand of long grain rice will do. I don't have a favorite.

  • Lali August 6, 2012, 10:27 PM

    I need help… my rice came out bit sticky… like if I put too much water but I know I didn’t. I did everything that said here but it has come out twice the same way. I am new at cooking. Help please.

    • Aunt Clara August 6, 2012, 10:43 PM

      It could be the rice you are using, the pot, the stove… I suggest you use one less cup of water than the recipe calls for and see if it works better that way.

  • Melissa B. { hungryfoodlove } October 16, 2012, 3:45 PM

    Tia Clara! In yesterday’s Lunes Latinos I honored my roots with an explanation of La Bandera Dominicana and included a link to this post for the arroz blanco recipe. Its funny that after I made my mom’s famous pollo guisado for my sister she also said: “ya te puedes casar” hahaha

  • Amour April 18, 2013, 9:47 AM

    My rice came out hard should i put more water i think it was too much rice how about if i used to cups of rice i’d put 4 cups of water??? i was very upset everything else came out delicious but the rice was hard and i had to throw away most of it. :(

    • Amour April 18, 2013, 10:11 AM

      maybe its because i have an electric stove and i actually put it on low?

    • Aunt Clara April 23, 2013, 10:39 PM

      It is very likely that either the lid wasn’t very tight-fitting, or you left too much heat at the end, or both.

  • lismany June 20, 2013, 10:59 AM

    yo soy PURA dominicana! y yo a cosinao mas que un sandwich! hoy voy a ponerme las pilas y cocinar la bandera dominicana! its my first try, my mom still cooks daily, but its about time I learn for myself! vamo ave si yo tambien me “puedo casar” gracia por la receta! mami tries to show me and its “un chin de esto, un chin de esto” I don’t know how to measure by the “chin” lol!

  • Roma November 4, 2013, 6:11 PM

    Hi
    The rice looks so good. Which store can I get it in Newjersey. and what is the brand name. Thanks.