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Rice and Peas jamaikanisch kochen

Rice and peas from scratch

Rice and peas is a traditional Jamaican rice dish. Yes, they really say peas even though they mean kidney beans. It is the perfect accompaniment to jerk chicken and stews. In Jamaica, rice and peas can be bought in practically every restaurant.

Rice and peas is made with coconut milk. But in Jamaica, coconut milk is still made in the traditional way from fresh coconuts, which is different from just using canned coconut milk. Canned coconut milk is actually an extract. It has a much more intense flavor, is fattier and creamier than homemade coconut milk. That's why rice and peas always turns out mushy when you use the amount of coconut milk specified in the recipe with the same amount of canned coconut milk.

For this recipe, I went to the trouble of making rice and peas the traditional way. It was quite a lot of work, but it was worth it. If you still want to use canned coconut milk (which saves a lot of time), you can dilute canned coconut milk with water. This will give you a similar result.

This recipe conjured up the authentic taste of Jamaica on my table. The coconut flavor is subtle, as it should be for this dish. The spices and flavors give the rice a wonderful taste. Just try it and see for yourself. Feel free to watch the YouTube video (link below).

Jamaican Rice and Peas - Jamaican cooking

Rice and Peas

Ingredients
2 cups basmati or parboiled rice
One cup of raw kidney beans, soaked for 12 hours
1 coconut or 250 ml coconut milk from a tetra pack (canned coconut cream must be diluted with water)
1 tablespoon of sugar
1-3 spring onions (cut into large pieces)
approx. 6 allspice seeds, e.g. YARDIES Allspice
Thyme sprigs (fresh) or 1 tsp dried thyme
1-3 garlic cloves, pressed
1 Scotch Bonnet Chili, whole
1 tsp table salt

preparation
Soak the kidney beans in 400 ml of water at least 12 hours beforehand (preferably overnight).

Steps with fresh coconut
If you have decided to prepare it with a fresh coconut, it must first be opened. There are several ways to open a coconut. I repeatedly hit it all around with the back of a cleaver (also available in our shop). I always tried to hit the same spot. After a while a crack forms and then the coconut can be opened. But there are other methods too, and you can find numerous videos on the Internet. Scrape out the flesh and chop it as finely as possible in a food processor or with a hand blender, adding a little water. You can also do this with a square grater (used very often in Jamaica), but it is very strenuous and takes longer. Put the flesh in a pan with 500 ml of water and 1 tbsp of sugar, bring to the boil briefly and leave to stand for at least 30 minutes. Then pour the liquid into a clean cloth and squeeze it out really well.

Further steps for preparation with fresh or tetrapak coconut milk
Wash the rice until the water remains clear and drain well.
Cook the previously soaked kidney beans in the soaking water on medium heat until they begin to become soft.

Now add the rice to the beans and add the other ingredients such as the coconut milk and the spices. Continue cooking on a medium heat. It is better to keep the heat a little lower than too high. Towards the end of the cooking time (when there is hardly any liquid left on the bottom of the pan), cover the pan with a kitchen towel and put the lid on top so that hardly any steam can escape. Reduce the heat to a minimum (approx. level 1-2 of 10) and let the rice simmer for a further 15-20 minutes. The rice is ready when there is no liquid left and the rice is completely dry but cooked. Before serving, remove the thyme sprigs, allspice berries and Scotch bonnet chili. Be careful that the chili does not fall apart, otherwise the dish will be hotter.

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