Feb 27, 2011

Arroz Congri (Cuban Rice and Black Beans)




The aroma that fills your kitchen while cooking this Cuban rice dish will make you want to pump up the salsa music and grab a mojito!

Rice and black beans cook together in this flavorful dish, which gives the rice it's black color. In addition it's cooked with peppers, onions, garlic, cumin and bay leaf. Not only is the dish delicious, it's also high in fiber, protein, anti-oxidants, it's low fat, vegan, and gluten-free. Win win!!

This is very filling thanks to the beans. You cans enjoy this as a vegetarian main dish with a salad, or great as a side dish with steak, chicken or pork. Try this with Chicken Sabroso or Slow Cooked Pernil, you won't be sorry!

I ate this with an avocado papaya salad (recipe coming) and I was thoroughly satisfied, I didn't miss the meat!

White rice is typically used in this dish, I've never had it with brown rice but I'm sure it would be delicious for those of you who prefer brown - you may have to adjust the liquid and cooking time. You can of course use your own cooked beans from dried beans if you prefer not to used canned. This recipe does not recommend you drain the beans, the liquid is what gives the rice the black color. For those of you who must drain the beans, be sure to fill the can back with water so it won't be too dry.


Arroz Congri (Cuban Rice and Black Beans)
Gina's Skinny Recipes
Servings: 5 • Serving Size: 1 cup • Old Points: 5 pts • Points+: 6 pts
Calories: 258.2 • Fat: 2.3 g Carb: 49.4 g Fiber: 6.6 g Protein: 9.8 g


Ingredients:
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper, chopped
  • small onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup uncooked long grain rice
  • 15 oz can black beans, I use Goya (don't drain)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 bay leaf
  • pinch oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

In a heavy medium sized pot, heat oil on medium heat. Add onions, peppers and garlic and saute until soft, about 4-5 minutes.



Add rice, beans, water, cumin, bay leaf, oregano and salt and pepper.



Simmer on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the rice absorbs most of the water and just barely skims the top of the rice.



Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minute (don't peek). Make sure you have a good seal on your cover, the steam cooks the rice. After 20 minutes, shut flame off and let it sit, covered another 5 minutes (don't open the lid).

100 comments :

  1. It's amazing that such a simple dish can be so good, I love black beans znd rice but never made them with sofrito, must be even better.

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  2. Seriously Gina, you are AMAZING! I stumbled onto this site a few months ago when my fiancee' and I started weight watchers. EVERYTHING we have tried has been SO good! He's lost 20, and I've lost 12, thanks to you keeping us on track with these awesome recipes. I have one question about your web-site. Is there an easy way to do a search? Right now I sort of click on a similar recipe and let it take me to different places. When I use the side panel of "Side Dishes" (or others) it only gives me a few. Where's ALL of your recipes? - Kristy Fox, Upstate NY

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  3. Oh how I love beans and rice. Like you said it is the perfect vegetarian meal!

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  4. Madga, I agree!

    Kristy, thank you!!! I do have a search bar at the top right. I guess it's hard to see. I use it all the time to find my recipes :)

    Heather, yes, black beans are perfect for vegetarians because they are higher in protein than other beans.

    You will all love this, I promise!

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    1. This sounds very close to my dad's recipe, will be using it tomorrow for thanksgiving thanks for sharing.

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  5. GINA! Yeah! LOL! I found it, right under my nose! Thanks again for your site! LOVE IT, LOVE YOU! - Kristy

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  6. I was so happy to find this recipe this morning. I opened my refrigerator this morning to find nothing much but a huge red pepper. I had onions in my pantry and black beans in the cabinet. This was delicious and so easy to make. My husband loved it too! As always thanks for sharing.

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  7. Some canned black beans are in a salty solution, some are in a sugary one. Which one is this?

    Looks delicious! Excited to try it. :)

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  8. Too funny and freaky. I just bookmarked your pernil recipe last night to make this next weekend while we're out hiking (we've made a bunch of your recipes), and was thinking that I can't believe you haven't ever posted a congri recipe. I love congri, and order it every time I go out for Cuban food.

    Thanks! Now our meal for Saturday is complete: pernil, congri and a tropical fruit salad.

    Colleen @ The Taste Place

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  9. Today was my 1st visit to your site. Your recipes and photos look wonderful. I'd like to try them. For health reasons, I am on a sodium restricted diet. Is there any chance you could include sodium content along with the other nutritional values?

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  10. Omg, this is so freaky, I have been searching all over the internet for a recipe for congri that was healthy and here it is. Thank you so much for all of your recipes!
    Brittany

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  11. Aime, I'm so happy you enjoyed it, this is one of the meals I can make at any time since I usually have all the ingredients on hand.

    La Reveuse- Salted, not sweet.

    Colleen, great! Enjoy your Latin feast :)

    Thanks Carol! I don't list the amount of salt in my recipes since I do it to taste, so my nutritional values for sodium would not be accurate.

    Brittany, we were thinking alike.

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  12. I made this tonight!! It was delicious!! but, I used brown rice, didn't have any white, had to add some extra water and got only 3.5 cups, increasing the points to 9!! EEK!! Did I do something wrong? Thanks!!

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  13. I made this tonight with brown rice and a 19 oz can of black beans. I used chicken broth for 1 c of water, and used a full second cup of water. I let it cook, covered, for 50 minutes and sit for 10 minutes off the heat. It was a touch too soupy - I think next time I'll use only 1.5c liquid when using 19oz of beans. But it was very tasty, and a great side dish with your Peruvian Roast chicken - which was also delicious. Thanks Gina, love your recipes!

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  14. Mara- white rice gets really fluffy when cooks, it expands, changing the recipe can always result in changes to texture, servings, etc. Personally I've only made this with white. Brown rice is not common in Cuban cuisine.

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  15. Hi Gina, thanks for all of your fabulous recipes! Being cuban, this is my specialty and a must have at every family function. I make it with parboiled rice and I pour in some Goya mojo marinade while the beans are cooking before the rice absorbs the liquid...it won't affect the calories and it's amazing! Keep those great recipes coming Love ya!

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  16. I love black beans and rice and I have everything I need at home to make this so it will be on my menu this week!

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  17. In Central America this dish is called gallo pinto. It it made almost the same way as your recipe for arroz congri with a few variations. In Costa Rica, for example, the gallo pinto is eaten at breakfast and is made with beans and DAY OLD rice. Normally beans are made by the bucketful on Sunday to last all week and then every morning rice is made for lunches and dinner. So in the morning someone would take the beans from the large pot and yesterdays left over rice and turn it into breakfast. I used to have a GIANT mound of it with a friend egg on top served with bread. O.M.G. You NEED to try it, it's SO good. I don't know if that makes it more unhealthy but it is definitely a way to use up extra arroz congri if you have it!

    p.s. I'm new to the site but my bf and I are on a major diet right now so finding yummy and health food is a must! Thanks for the great recipes.

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    1. Thanks for suggesting the fried egg on top! I've never thought about that or even heard of it before--maybe because I'm not latina? I made this arroz congri for supper last night with pernil, but this morning I fried up some eggs and my hubby and I had them on top of some of the leftover rice. It IS delicious! Love this recipe.

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  18. Thanks Amy! I love the sound of your story, I pictured myself there in the lush rain forest. By the way, I love a sunny side egg over rice, it's totally a Latin thing! I would eat this for dinner for a very low cost meal. In Colombia they do something similar with left overs, yum.

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  19. Yum, Gina! As always, this and the papaya and avocado salad look delish. Please don't EVER stop this blog, or my family may never eat again. :-)

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  20. I love beans and rice! This looks so flavorful!

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  21. I am making this for dinner tomorrow can't wait to try this one. Love your website.

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  22. My husband loved this dish. We paired it with the Broiled or Grilled Pollo Sabroso. He loved both! Thanks so much for a new dinner.

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  23. Gina I love your site and recipes. Have tried several and never disappointed. Will try this one very soon. I love the pot you used. Where could I get one?
    Jeneen

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  24. Janeen, it's imported from Colombia, made of clay from local artisans. I'm not sure where you can find them here. Isn't it beautiful!

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  25. You had make me soooooo happy with this recipe!!! I love "arroz congri"!!! We eat this dish in PR with "carne guisada" usually, at least in my home. one of my favorite and it's gluten free!!!!!!

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  26. This was deeeeeeeeelicious! I served it with your Cuban Pork and turnip greens. OMG...filling and so, so, so good. One thing, though...when I ran the NI through the tracker doohickey, it came out to 6 points, P+, not 5.

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  27. Kelly, You're right, I just rechecked. Thanks for noticing, I'll update it now.

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  28. Made this tonight....omg so good. Never have eaten Cuban food I decided to give it a try. Trying to eat more beans thanks to high cholesterol. Wow this was amazing. Already have the left overs packed for lunch. And so easy too and quick. Def something that will be made weekly. You are amazing Gina. I thank you so much.

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  29. Gina, I really love your site. Your recipes are delish! I've never made this before and it turned out perfectly.

    I also love the tortellini soup. I make it every Sunday and have it for lunch all week. Mmmm, addicting!

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  30. Rosanne, I love Cuban food! Glad you tried something out of the norm for you.

    Josie, thank you!

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  31. Made this for dinner and it was a hit! It would also be great as a burrito filling with some shredded chicken in a whole wheat tortilla. Thanks for another great recipe!

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  32. I made this tonight for dinner. It was a big hit with my Mexican husband! I loved all of the peppers in it, too!

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  33. I made the Barbacoa Pork this week, which was fantastic and a big hit with the family, and I made the Arroz Congri as well. I followed the recipe word for word, and while not terrible, we found it VERY bland. We love our rice and beans, but this was nothing at all like what we've eaten before :(

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  34. It sounds like you didn't add enough salt which would make the rice taste bland.

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  35. Does this freeze well?

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  36. I've never frozen rice so I am not sure. I would imagine it would be ok.

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  37. Once again, I have this on the stove. I try to throw in a vegetarian night once or twice a week, and this is such an easy, delicious one pot meal. Thanks Gina!

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  38. Gina, I followed your steps which were very easy and it came out AWESOME!! Thanks so much

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  39. This was good! So many different uses! Can be mixed with chicken, in a burrito or taco salad.... Leftovers can be tossed in soup. Yum!

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  40. Made this tonight and paired it with the peruvian chicken (I shredded mine and tossed on top) and aji verde sauce. SOOOO GOOD!!!! My boyfriend announced that - hands down - this is the best meal I've ever made. I think I agree with him. THANK YOU!

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  41. Gina: I really want to make this but I hate the taste of undrained/unrinsed black beans. If I rinse and drain them and add a little chicken broth and salt to the pot, do you think that would be a reasonable solution?

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  42. Tried this recipe last night and it was DELISH!!! Highly recommend not draining the black beans as the color and flavor the juice added was awesome. Thanks Gina!!

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  43. Jen Lepley-Callan8/22/11, 9:52 AM

    Can't wait to make this again tonight!!! YUM. Serving it with the Zuchinni Enchiladas....(I cut them in half so half a serving of both meals)....yum....

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  44. Hi Gina,
    I have made several of your recipes and all have been a hit at my house. I followed this one exactly but for some reason my rice was more of a greyish color rather than brown like yours. My boyfriend took one look and gobbled it all up. Which made me feel great but now that I am looking at your post for the second time, my rice looks a little different in color. Could you tell me why this happened?

    Mary

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  45. Not sure, but as lOng as it tasted good I wouldn't worry too much :)

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  46. I made this recipe yesterday. My family loved it! I used brown rice, so the cooking time was about 40 min. It was excellent! And it is a great way to use up any peppers from the garden. I love this site! Everything I have made is always good! And the pictures are beautiful! Thanks!!

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  47. I bet it was great with brown rice, I'll have to try that next time!

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  48. Just discovered your website and have made a few things already and love them all. I made this, but used quinoa instead of rice and also threw in fresh cilantro (like I do when I make spanish rice). I have to tell you, it came out perfectly - I also used 1.5cups of chicken broth instead of water. Thanks for the idea, went great w/your Pernil recipe! Nikki

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  49. First off..im soooo glad i found this website...being on weight watchers its been hard to find yummy low point recipes.....and i was raised on Cuban food..so i had the full fat version...this Congri was Delish!!! My husband and son enjoyed it aswell i paired it w/ your pollo sabroso....also very good....if all of your recipes are this yummy... ill do weight watchers forvever;-)

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  50. I just love your website and have a binder full of your recipes. I finally got around to making this one with brown rice. It just had to be cooked a little longer because of the brown rice but definitely a keeper. Thank you Gina!

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  51. So easy, and fantastic. I added 1 cup of shredded chicken, topped it with crumbled light feta and served it with Tostidos Baked Scoops for a meal. Delish!

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  52. I forgot... I also used chicken stock instead of water...

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  53. I LOOOOOOOOOOOOVE this recipe! I made it tonight for the first time and paired it with the pollo sabroso... OMG. I made the roasted potatoes with chicken sausage (I used lean sweet italian turkey sausage) a couple of days ago and it was awesome as well. My kids even liked it. Girl, you are a HIT! I love this website.

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  54. We really liked this receipe. We paired with Pernil al Horno (tyler florence). YUUUUmo- Hubby likes things a bit spicer though? Any suggestions? We did go light on the salt.

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  55. I just got done eating this for dinner. It was yummy but I did a few things different. First I don't think I added enough salt while it cooked; so we had to add some to the rice on our plates. I found this was missing a pop of flavor so I added some lime juice and then for a kick of spice I drizzled some sriracha sauce! It was very tasty by the end. I served some caribbean jerk seasoned chicken thighs on the side.

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  56. I tasted the dish before the water boiled and I found it bit bland as well. I searched online and found authentic recipes which require more seasoning. Try these additions to make the dish more flavorful.
    I added more garlic, 1 1/2 tsp of salt, 2 tsp of cumin, 1/2 tsp chili powder and 1/2 tsp of oregeno.

    I will be eating this for lunch accompanied with a nice side of vegetables.

    Thanks for the fantastic site.

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  57. Do you think this can be successfully made in a rice cooker?

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    1. My thoughts exactly. I tried doing it on the stove top and failed miserably...as I always tend to do when I try cooking rice that way. The rice cooker is my only hope! I'm going to try it. I'll let you know how it turns out!

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  58. Just ate this and it's delicious! I just think 20 min was a bit much, the rice was overcooked. Will try for 12 to 15 min next time!
    thanks!

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    1. Right before I put the lid on mine, Nadja, I added just a little bit more water...maybe 1/4 of a cup or so. I think that helped it along a lot! :)

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  59. I made this to go with our dinner this evening and really loved it! It's an easy and simple dish but ended up being tastier than I expected! This is a definite "make it again" dish!

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  60. I made this tonight, thinking it would be just for my family... Then the in-laws showed up. I worried this wouldn't be enough, as I didn't double the recipe, but there was plenty, and everyone helped themselves. Paired with a steak salad and garlic-toasted rolls, this was fabulous, AND they think I can cook! Thanks!

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  61. i made this today ahead of time as a side dish for workweek meals as i have been grilling a lot lately. i snuck a taste and let me tell you it was delicious. the best beans and rice i have ever had!!! this will be on my meal rotation on a regular basis along with my other favorites from this site(spinach lasagna rolls, chicken parm).

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  62. We ended up eating this tonight for dinner as a side with grilled steak and grilled corn on the cob. it was delicious just like i posted earlier! my daughter loved it!

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  63. I've tried making this before (different recipe) and it was a disaster. Made yours and oh my - I'm sharing it with the world! It was so yummy and it will be come a staple in my household.

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  64. Made this tonight and it was delicious! I love black beans, and rice is a very common side dish in our house so this was just perfect!
    I swapped the white rice for brown rice and it turned out great. It was all I had on hand and was worried I wouldn't be able to get it to turn out right, but the only change necessary was letting it simmer a little while longer (about 40 minutes). I will definitely be making this again soon. :)

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  65. Am I correct in assuming I shouldn't use instant rice?

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  66. Hi there! I love your recipes so far, and love that you made a skinny version of a family favorite! My question is, can I make this in a rice cooker, versus a dutch oven? Thanks!

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  67. Totally awesome!!!! I made with Cajun shrimp and tilapia and loved it.

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  68. Delish!!! This is my favorite black beans & rice dish. I use basmati rice. Love your recipes :)

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  69. This is called MORO y CRISTIANOS...MOORS AND CHRISTIANS RICE. THE CONGRI is made with red beans

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    1. Some parts in cuba make it with red beans, but MORO Y CHRISTIANOS (moores and Christians) is white rice and blacked beans cooked SEPARATELY, but served together side by side.

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    2. you are right. this is not congri. its moros y cristianos "moros".

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  70. As Cuban ,I have to correct .."Congri"is red beans mix with white rice..Black beans mix rice is MOROS..

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  71. Red beans cooked with white white rice is arroz junto con abichuelas, punto. Or the way u make it is Jamaican rice ( which is about the same thing as ours!) Different parts in Cuba call congri and make it differently, ( in Santiago is called congri and usually is made with yellow,green and red peppers) just because she doesn't make it your way, doesn't mean you have to question or belittle her knowledge of this dish or her race. :)

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  72. This came out well. I found that the recommended 20 min cooking time was perfect. Next time I will be more aggressive with the seasoning and probably try vegetable stock instead of water.

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  73. loved it.it like i have had before.

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  74. Cooking this now and NOT peeking, even though i really want to...

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  75. I liked this, but it could have used more flavor. I am not a vegetarian, so I might substitute chicken broth next time.

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  76. I liked this, but it could have used more flavor. I am not a vegetarian, so I might substitute chicken broth next time.

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  77. ARROZ CONGRI is not rice and BLACK beans, but rice and RED orKIDNEY beans.

    ARROZ MORO or MOROS or MOROS Y CRISTIANOS is rice and BLACK BEANS.

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  78. Enjoyed this one. With the leftovers, I added chunky salsa, chopped spinach and then melted a little cheddar on top with a dab of sour cream. Yum!

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  79. What a great site! I'm looking forward to trying more of your recipes. I am a very inexperienced cook and was wondering if you could give me an estimate of how much salt to use in this recipe (I am kind of a disaster at estimating!). Thanks!

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  80. I just made this and it really turned out so great. I didn't have black beans so I added kidney beans. Didn't green bell pepper but had red and yellow. Seriously, what a great dish. We like rice with everything so we are going to serve it with some steak.

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  81. This recipe turned out so delicious and was very easy to follow. I had given up on rice and beans since I could never get the consistency right, but this was spot on and it looked just like the photo! It was so good that my fiance and I almost ate the entire pot (LOL)

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  82. I just made this for the family. My toddler came at me with his dish after scraping it clean and said, "More! More!" I was literally beaming with pride. I made it with brown rice and it took a while to cook, but boy was it good. Best of all--simple, healthy, ingredients. Another AWESOME recipe from Gina. I'm never let down.

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  83. Hello all! I would like to make this using brown rice but I am not sure how to adjust the recipe since brown rice does take longer to cook. Any suggestions?

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    1. I just made this for my family and I used brown rice. Instead of 1 cup I used 2 cups brown rice with 8 cups water. It worked for us and came out great! Loved it!

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  84. I just made this for dinner with brown rice. It was FANTASTIC!!! I served it with Trader Joes salsa on top. A total keeper! :-)

    ~Stacy @ Stacy Makes Cents

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  85. I just made this for dinner. I was craving for Cuban rice and beans, and this recipe satisfied my palate. Instead of water, I used low sodium chicken broth. I also added 1 tbs of cider vinegar. I garnished with chopped cilantro and sprinkled a little bit of lime. My kids and my husband loved! Thanks for sharing this yummy recipe!!!

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  86. Thanks for this recipe. I just made it and it was delicious. The bay leaf was a little bit overpowering for my taste. I will use a smaller leaf next time. I added extra garlic because I love garlic :)

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  87. Waiting for rice to cook,,, I simmered it for 40 minutes, then sampled, and rice was not done yet. Am I doing something wrong?

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  88. Has anyone tried this by using their rice cooker? I saw a few comments asking if they can use a rice cooker I was just wondering if anyone had thoughts about that.

    I plan on making this tonight and I am excited! I'm so glad I found your website and I can't wait to try other fun recipes!

    --Sarah A.

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  89. I have used a rice cooker but one made out of clay and has settings for white and brown rice and stew.
    I sauté the veggies a few minutes and then add the rice for a few minutes, then put all into clay cooker on white rice setting. It usually comes out about right; I use more of each seasoning and use others as well instead of salt

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  90. Made this last night. I'm sure it's delicious on it's own but i wanted to make it a one pot meal so I added some ham and a small can of tomato sauce. I doubled the beans. I did not double the rice but I did use brown rice. Since I added the tomato sauce I only used 1 C. of water. It was AMAZING. My son could not stop eating this. Next time I will follow the recipe as directed and try it with the Pernil. I can't wait to try more of your recipes...especially the Latin food. I am an Irish white girl but I LOVE Latin food. Thank you for this website. It will help my husband and I stay on track.

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