Are you maybe thinking that Coconut & Pineapple Rice with Beans doesn’t seem like a totally relevant recipe for early-December? You’re right, but hear me out.
Preparing authentic Jerk Chicken is number 12 on my list of Kitchen Resolutions and the end of the year is fast-approaching.
A couple years ago Michael and I visited Jamaica. It was a super lazy stretch of days, complete with blue skies, beautiful beaches and fresh coconuts filled with rum. One of the most memorable parts of the trip was our lunchtime routine. After a morning of swimming and sipping pineapple drinks, we’d mosey over to the Irie Grill, grab a couple cold Red Stripes, find a picnic table in the shade and enjoy a plate of sweet and spicy Jerk Chicken with beans and rice.
Well, small wrench in the Jerk plan. True Jerk Chicken calls for fresh wood from the pimento tree. Pimento trees are indigenous to Jamiaca and are not commonly found in the greater-Boston area. Minor detail. Unwilling to abandon my Jamaican-cravings entirely, I opted for the next best thing. I assembled a thick paste-like marinade using classic Jerk ingredients including allspice, thyme, scallions, fresh ginger and Scotch bonnet peppers. The chicken was good (we’re about to come full-circle here), but this rice and beans dish completely stole the show. Serve this recipe with jerk burgers for a taste of the Caribbean. This would also be excellent paired with salmon. And don’t forget a pineapple drink!
Note to self: order an all-in-one-jerk kit for Summer 2016.
Coconut & Pineapple Rice with Beans
Adapted from Iowa Girl Eats
1 tbsp coconut oil (or vegetable oil)
2 – 3 scallions, chopped, plus extra for garnish
2 – 3 garlic cloves, grated with a microplane
2 – 3 fresh thyme sprigs
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup pineapple juice
1 cup coconut milk
1 cup long grain white rice
1/2 tsp salt
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add green onion, garlic and thyme and sauté for 2 minutes.
Add juice and coconut milk to the pan and bring to a boil. Add rice and salt, stir. Add beans, stir, cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 15-20 minutes or until all the liquid has been absorbed, and rice is tender. Garnish with chopped scallions.