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Best Pigeon Pea Recipes

Best Pigeon Pea Recipes

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What is Pigeon Pea?

Pigeon peas, also arhar, red gram, toor, tuvar, are small legumes used widely in South Asian cuisines, as well as East Africa and Central America.

Recipe Summary

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 ½ cups uncooked long-grain parboiled rice (such as Uncle Ben's)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • ¼ cup chopped Canadian bacon (about 3 ounces)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped green onions
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (15-ounce) can green pigeon peas, drained
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Green onions (optional)

Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add rice, 1 teaspoon oil, and salt cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion, bacon, and garlic cook 10 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Stir in rice, chopped green onions, cumin, pepper, and peas cook 8 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Stir in parsley. Garnish with green onions, if desired.

Jamaican Pigeon Peas Vs Puerto Rican Arroz Con Gandules

Jamaican pigeon peas and rice are very different from Puerto Rican Arroz Con Gandules (Puerto Rican Rice and Pigeon Peas) with the seasonings used to make theirs.

Jamaican Pigeon Peas also called ‘Gungo peas and Rice’ is made using seasoned coconut milk with traditional culinary herbs including thyme, scallion, and Scotch Bonnet Peppers.

Puerto Rican Arroz Con Gandules is traditionally made using a tomato sauce base with herb blend called sofrito, Sazon with achiote, green olives with pimiento and bacon.

Creole Pigeon Peas

Pigeon peas are a staple in the Caribbean. They are used both in their fresh form as I have done or dried. The recipe I have developed, because it is the sort of thing that doesn’t really have a recipe, is very common here, the other common ones being… in traditional West Indian “rice and peas” or in the Trinidadian one pot celebration “pelau.” Pigeon peas are in fact a legume and contain loads of protein. They are quite easy to find these days, even in the freezer section at the supermarket but I do remember my mother bringing a basket of them to shell on the beach while keeping a watchful eye on us “ti manmays” (little children in Kweyol). You can buy the shelled peas at farmers markets now as well, as I have done.

Pigeon peas are always part of our Christmas meal believe it or not. I have memories of my mother and a family friend (the other matriarch) mumbling behind their hands about who cooked the best pigeon peas. You see, if you cover the pot while they are cooking they go brown do you cook them first in baking soda to make the cooking quicker? Do you use “pig foot” for flavouring? Do you add sugar? For such a simple dish there sure are a great deal of variations.

They are my brother Gerard’s absolutefavourite! My version is clean and fresh with no added flavourings apart from the good stuff. I’ve called them Creole because you will see they share a similar palette as creole seasoning.

500g raw pigeon peas (3 1/4 c)

Soften the onions in the olive oil then add the garlic, peppers, thyme and celery. Cook for 2 or 3 minutes, then tip in the pigeon peas. Stir so that the peas become well coated as in the photo above and add enough water to cover them.

Once the peas have had about 30 minutes simmering gently, you can add the pumpkin. Cook for at least another 15 minutes. These babies take a long time to become soft. Keep an eye on the water level. You will need to top up as you go. What you want to end up with is a sauce, not a soup. Once the peas have softened sufficiently, mash the pumpkin against the side of your pot to create a richer gravy, but leave some bits intact for interest. You might also want to check you’ve added enough salt.

You could serve these as a side vegetable, or dollop onto warm cooked grains such as rice or quinoa.


Wash and trim the celery, then cut each rib into pieces about the length of a wine cork.

Toast the walnuts in a shallow pan for a few minutes until they are fragrant. Set the toasted nuts aside, then wipe the pan to remove any flakes of walnut skin and add the butter, oil and then the celery. Leave the celery to cook for 8-10 minutes, occasionally moving it around the pan so that it cooks evenly.

Halve and stone the cherries.

Lift the celery from the pan and put it to one side. Slash the skin of the pigeon breasts in a couple of places – this will stop it from tearing as it cooks. Add the pigeon breasts to the celery pan and let them cook – while spooning the sizzling butter and oil over them almost continually – for about 3 or 4 minutes on each side. They should be rose pink in the middle. Set them aside to rest.

Return the walnuts and celery to the pan, then pour in the red- wine vinegar and bring to the boil, stirring in any cooking juices from the pigeon as you go.

Roughly chop the parsley. Add the stoned and halved cherries to the pan, then the chopped parsley. Check the seasoning, then serve the cherries, celery and walnuts over the pigeon breasts.


There&rsquos certainly a million and one cook rice. I&rsquom sure I&rsquove made my way through half of those ways at this point because rice is one of my favorite dishes. I love fried rice, cook up rice, yellow rice, coconut rice &ndash and the list goes on. I&rsquove shared many rice recipes over the years of blogging but oddly haven&rsquot shared a recipe for Pigeon Peas and Rice. I think it may be because I don&rsquot cook it often so it has never crossed my mind until recently.

We made a quick trick to Florida a few weeks back and ate pigeon peas, also known as gungo peas, and rice every day that we were there. Surprisingly I didn&rsquot grow tired of it and neither did my children and it remind me of how much I loved pigeon peas when I was grown up. Now that I&rsquom back at home, it has been in heavy rotation around here and no one is complaining which is always a plus.

Pigeon peas and rice is similar to the more well known Rice and Peas. Pigeon peas and rice are simmered in a coconut broth seasoned with thyme, garlic, onion and peppers. It&rsquos a fairly simple recipe and goes well with stews such as jerk stewed chicken, fish stew or oxtail. These Baked Pork Chops pictured above goes well with it as well. Enjoy!

Want more like this Puerto Rican Arroz con Gandules recipe? See these other Puerto Rican recipes from Fab Everyday:

The base to this dish, as with many savory Puerto Rican recipes, is sofrito, which is essentially the Spanish version of mirepoix. While you can find jarred, pre-made versions (affiliate link), there’s nothing quite like homemade sofrito for your Puerto Rican cooking. This is why I always have a few portions of homemade sofrito in my freezer, ready to use when I need it. Get my family’s Puerto Rican Sofrito recipe here.

The complete Arroz con Gandules recipe is at the bottom of this post (Jump to Recipe), but first, here are some step-by-step pictures and tips to help you with the method.

I always recommend Goya products, so you’ll notice several of the ingredients shown here are from Goya. You should be able to find them in the Latin/Hispanic or International section of your grocery store, but if you can’t, you can check Amazon (affiliate link).

Gandules (affiliate link) are green pigeon peas, and are a key ingredient in this recipe. Their flavor is much milder than an English pea. Be sure not to drain the liquid from the cans, as you will need it in the recipe!

Part of the way this meal gets its lovely color is from the achiote in these Goya Sazón (affiliate link) seasoning packets. Goya makes a few varieties of Sazón, but make sure the one you use includes achiote.

You can use bacon, cubes of ham, or salt pork in this recipe (or a combination of all three). I personally prefer to use salt pork.

The recipe calls for green olives stuffed with pimentos and capers. The mixture of these two ingredients is called alcaparrado.

When you start sauteeing the first ingredients (the sofrito, pork, and achiote) it will produce an aroma like nothing else! Once it hits the pan your senses will be delighted!

Here’s what it looks like when those three combine:

After letting those cook for a few minutes, you add the alcaparrado and tomato sauce to complete the base of the rice dish.

When you stir in the rice, you will want to mix it thoroughly and let it cook for a minute or two so that the rice has a chance to thoroughly absorb the flavors.

Once the rice has been well combined with the seasoning, you add the gandules with their liquid, and enough water to cover the rice by 1″.

Season with some salt and pepper, then cover and let boil until most of the liquid has been absorbed.

The rice won’t be completely tender at this point, but you will want to gently turn the rice from bottom to top, turn the heat to low, then cover and cook for about another 30 minutes until the rice is done. During this time, you’ll turn the rice gently again from bottom to top just once more about mid-way through.

You’ll notice towards the end that the rice on the bottom of the pan will stick and brown. Don’t worry about this – that crisp layer of rice is called pegao and adds a delicious taste and texture.

Here’s the recipe! Don’t forget to share and pin, and stay tuned for more of my family’s Puerto Rican recipes.

How to Make this Recipe

Step 1: Cook the Bacon

Place a large pan on the stove over medium heat and add the bacon. Flip occasionally until the bacon has cooked through completely.

Remove the bacon from the pan and place on a paper towel lined plate.

Use a knife to cut the bacon into bite-sized pieces. Set aside.

Step 2: Prep the Rice

Place a large dutch oven or pot over medium heat and add the oil.

Add the onions, green peppers, red peppers, rice, and salt. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes, until the onion is soft and the rice is lightly toasted.

Add the tomato pasta and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring.

Add the oregano, cumin, pigeon peas, corn, tomatoes, chicken stock and 1 cup water.

Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer.

Step 3: Cook the Rice

Cover the pot with a lid and cook until the rice is tender (without stirring) about 25 to 30 minutes.

Remove the lid and fluff the rice with a fork. Add the bacon back into the rice and stir.

Garnish with cilantro and scallions. Serve and enjoy!

White Rice Ground Beef Recipes Ingredients 1 pound of lean ground beef 1 cup of Jasmine rice 5 cups of water 2tbs of vegetable oil Half of a green onion 1 Maggie Bouillon cube 1tsp of Goya Adobo 1tsp of Curry powder 1tsp of onion powder 1tsp of garlic powder 1tsp of salt Preparation: [&hellip]

Haitian White Rice Recipe & Chicken Mixed Vegetable INGREDIENTS 3 lb. whole chicken wings 1/2 shallot, diced 2 tsp of garlic, minced 1 tbsp. of lime juice 4 sprigs of fresh parsley 4 sprigs of fresh thyme 1 tsp. black pepper 1/2 scotch bonnet pepper 1/2 red pepper 1 Maggi chicken cube 1 tbsp of Adobo or [&hellip]

Related Video

What a Disappointment! I am an adventurous and skilled cook who was looking forward to welcoming the Fall with a hardy new soup recipe. Alas, after devoting time and specialized ingredients to the Pigeon-Pea soup, we are now hungry and have to throw the whole pot away. The peas are too hard for our taste (despite having followed the recipe closely). Plus, the flavors are nothing special at all. Perhaps, this is an acquired taste you have to grow up with?

Incredibly tasty! Used ham bones for the meat, which yielded less than the 1 #, even so, it was still hearty. Couldn't find frozen Pigeon Peas so I used canned, well drained. Otherwise, followed the recipe as written. Next time, I would want to try it with Chorizo and serve it over rice.

SO GOOD, esp for something so healthy. I made this at least once a week last winter, and am looking forward to it again. I always used the canned pigeon peas, rinsed well, and had no problems with them. I too had trouble finding aji dulce peppers, so I substituted whatever available - - sometimes just more sweet red pepper, sometimes cubanelle, a couple of times a trimmed-down amount of poblando pepper. Agree that avocado is an excellent garnish. I made the plaintain thing once or twice, but you don't *need* it, in my opinion, if you are not trying to match your abuelas's recipe.

I didn't want to run to the store so I made this with dried navy beans I also added finely chopped celery to the sofrito and used a yellow plantain instead of a green one. It was so savory, so easy, and so delicious. Low fat, too.

i followed the recipe fairly accurately. could not find aji dulce chiles so i used a combination of cubanelle, sweet italian peppers and poblanos. also did not use any meat what so ever. this was excellent. the stew was served over white rice with a spoonful of yogurt on the top. it was rich and subtly spicy. would definitely make again.

The sweetness of the calabaza is a great contrast to the savory flavors in this dish. I couldn't find aji dulce so I just doubled the red bell pepper and added a bit of sweet Hungarian paprika it still tastes great!

This may be one of the best meals I've ever made, and very easy. I followed the recipe fairly closely, but substituted bacon for the sausage, used homemade vegetable stock, and served it over mixed rice (basmati, white and wild). Amazing combination of flavors, and it's even better the second day.

Very good version of a classic Puertorican recipe. The second time I made this soup I made some variations with very good results. Instead of the jalapeño pepper I used tabasco sauce, added a coupled of chopped culantro leaves (broad leaf cilantro), and did not use the grated plantain. The frozen green pigeon peas are the best if you dont find the fresh produce, but unless you dont have any other choice, I sugest not to use canned, in which case you must rinse them well. White rice as a side dish and simple avocado slices that you can add directly into the soup, completes this delicious and nutritious meal(pigeon peas are up to 22% protein). This soup is great the day after. Caution: dont confused aji dulce with its super hot cousin, the habanero or bonnet pepper, unless you are a capsicum adict.

Watch the video: Κατασκευή φωλιές για περιστέρια (June 2022).


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