Arroz Con Gandules (Rice and Pigeon Peas)

READY IN: 1hr 15mins




  • Soak pigeon peas overnight in 6 cups of water; drain and discard water.
  • In a large, covered pot, combine peas with 4 cups water and bring to a boil over high heat; cover, reduce heat to medium, and cook 30 minutes.
  • Season with salt and cook 15 minutes more; drain, reserving 3 cups of the cooking liquid (you may need to add more water to end up with the 3 cups).
  • Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, lightly brown the bacon and ham; add in the remaining sofrito ingredients and saute, over low heat until all the ingredients are tender and the tomatoes break down.
  • Stir in the additional ingredients and combine well; stir in the peas and rice.
  • Add the 3 cups of reserved cooking liquid and let cook, uncovered, until almost dry (it will look like little volcanos are erupting); stir up the rice from the bottom.
  • Cover and turn the heat down to the lowest setting and let cook 30 minutes, turning the rice, from the bottom, once halfway through cooking.
  • NOTE: This is how the dish is supposed to be cooked. I prefer to add the olives after the last turning of the rice for a "cleaner" flavor.