Contrary to Pinoy dishes which are best served family style, Arroz ala Cubana is practically a plated 1-dish meal. It’s simple yet filling. Plus, it seems to me as economical because you simply add finely diced vegetables like carrots, potatoes to serve as extenders. It’s kid-friendly,too!
Our family can have this any time of the day: anumang oras, almusal, tanghalian, hapunan! I usually serve this for Sunday brunch when we are not in a hurry.
This is among my favorites because of its siding which is pan fried “saba” (plantains). I like the contrast of savoury meat and sweet bananas. Especially when you top it with a perfect sunny side-up and sort of bursts and spills when you break it with the fork tines. And let the golden yolk drip and coat the hot steaming rice underneath.
Personally, I would put all the components of rice,egg,meat,a piece of fried saba in one spoonful because I want to enjoy it all at one time. Sarap!
¼ k (250 gms) ground lean pork
¼ k (250 gms) ground lean beef
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, minced
½ red bell pepper, finely diced
1 potato, cut into small cubes
1 carrot, cut into small cubes
1/8 c raisins
1 small can tomato paste
1 c water
2-3 bay leaves
2 t Spanish paprika
Salt & pepper to taste
Sugar to taste
4 cups of steamed rice
4 eggs, sunny side-up
4-8 saging na saba, sliced in half, lengthwise
Pan fry with little oil on non-stick pan
Pour about 3 T vegetable oil in a non-stick pan, sauté garlic and onion till it becomes fragrant and transparent. Add red bell pepper and continue to saute for about 2 more minutes. Add ground meat and stir till the pinkish meat color is gone. Add potatoes, carrots, raisins and water. (My sons don’t like raisins with viands so I don’t put and consider it an option) Bring to a boil then stir in tomato paste, Spanish paprika and bay leaves. Season meat mixture with salt, pepper and a bit of sugar to taste. Cover and let it simmer over low heat, stirring every once in a while.
Cook until the mixture is thick and not saucy. This would be about another 30 to 40 minutes. The little fat from the meat should have been rendered by this time.
Prepare a mound of rice in the middle of a big platter. Use a bowl to mold the rice for a nicer presentation. Carefully spoon the meat mixture on top of the rice. Serve the fried saba (plantains) on the side. And finally, top with perfectly cooked sunny-side up eggs.
You may want to serve hot sauce or chili flakes on the side for some heat.
© 2012, Kitchen Kitchie Koo. All rights reserved.