So I like my Arroz con Maíz with pineapple. “What do you mean you ‘don’t like it’?”
How many times have we been the source – or target – of that baffling question? Taste is a weird thing, and the old adage “there is no disputing about tastes” encapsulates perfectly the pointlessness of such arguments.
Perhaps the wisest approach to life is to accept that our taste is not universal, that it’s OK for people not to like what we do, and to never take offense when none was intended. Another great rule of thumb is to never question the intelligence of people based on their taste. OK, the exception being people who love boy bands. That is just wrong.
I know many people who have expressed their dislike for mixing sweet and savory flavors, something we Dominicans seem to generally like. A lot. There really is not point trying to explain why I love it to somebody who has tried it and found it lacking. Let’s not question each other’s intelligence, or parentage, and call it a day. Deal?
Rice and corn is a common combination in the Dominican menu, but the recipe I am going to present here is my own. Sorta. It is almost identical to the one found on a lot of Dominican tables, but mine has a secret ingredient: pineapple. No need to applaud, people. Really.
So, if you are like me, and don’t mind a little surprising your taste buds to keep them on their metaphorical toes, follow my recipe. If you don’t care for sweet mixed in with savory, skip it. I’ll still like you. UNLESS you like boy bands, ’cause that is wrong!
- 2½ tablespoons of oil
- 1 cup of sweet corn (boiled soft, or canned)
- 2½ cups of rice (long grain)
- 1 cup of pineapple cut into very small cubes (optional)
- 1 tablespoon of finely chopped cilantro
- 1 tablespoon of finely chopped parsley
- 3 cups of boiling-hot vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon of salt (or more, to taste)
- 4 sprigs of fresh cilantro, chopped finely
- Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a medium-size thick-bottom pot over medium heat.
- Add the corn and the rice and stir for a minute.
- Add pineapple, cilantro and parsley, stir for a minute.
- Add the vegetable broth, mix well. Taste the liquid and add salt to taste.
- Stir regularly to avoid excessive sticking.
- When all the water has evaporated cover with a tight fitting lid and simmer over very low heat.
- Wait 15 minutes and uncover. Stir, add the remaining oil and cover again.
- Wait another 10 minutes. Try the rice, it should be firm but tender inside.
- If necessary, cover and leave another 5 minutes over very low heat.
- Remove from the heat and mix in the cilantro.
- Serve with meat or fish dish of your choice.