A Delicious Recipe for Cuban Rice with Plantain

Does Cuban rice remind you of your childhood? It's quite easy to make this unique and surprising combination of flavors. Today's article will give you one more way to enjoy this nutritious grain.
A Delicious Recipe for Cuban Rice with Plantain

Last update: 01 July, 2021

Cuban rice is a staple of Spanish gastronomy. Even though the name makes you think of the Caribbean islands, it actually originated in the Canary Islands.

This dish is recognized worldwide and we see the influence of Cuba in the plantain and the rice, two common ingredients in this cuisine.

Cuban rice is a simple dish with a special flavor

Long, red, wild, carnaroli, bomba, brown… Rice in any of its varieties is always present in kitchens. In fact, people use it to prepare all sorts of delicious dishes, such as paella, risotto, stir-fry, and Cuban-style rice, of course.

The latter is quite easy to make, but it’s important to find the right way to cook the rice. For the rest, just rely on the quality and flavor of a good ingredient.

The interesting part about the recipe is you can achieve an exceptional combination of flavors and textures, through four humble, affordable, and common ingredients.

Try this recipe at home. Below you’ll find the steps, hints, and other information to prepare it successfully.

Cuban rice with plantains

Ingredients

This is for 4 servings, but you can modify it according to your preferences:

  • 4 c. of bomba rice
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 4 plantains
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 glass of homemade tomato sauce
  • Olive oil
  • A sprig of parsley
  • Salt
  • 10 c. of water (use vegetable or chicken broth for a more intense flavor)

A few green plantains.
Plantains are common in Cuban gastronomy.

Directions

  • Firstly, place a casserole dish on the hob with a little olive oil; then add the two peeled garlic cloves and let them fry until golden. After that, add the rice, the bay leaf, and salt to taste.
  • Now, add the water and let it boil over high heat for the first three minutes, cover the dish, and cook it over low heat for another 17 minutes. After this time, turn off the heat and let it rest for five more minutes.
  • Then, add a generous amount of oil to a small pan and place it over a medium heat. Crack the eggs in a glass and put it into the pan, one at a time, when the oil is hot and starts to smoke a little. Fry for 20 or 30 seconds while pouring oil on top with the spatula. Drain and remove. Repeat the process with the remaining eggs.
  • Peel the plantains and cut them in half lengthwise. Fry the slices in the same frying pan where you cooked the eggs. You can flour them lightly if you wish. They should be well browned and ready in about three to four minutes.
  • Heat the tomato sauce and chop the parsley.
  • Serve the rice with tomato sauce.
  • Add a couple of plantain slices, an egg, and garnish with chopped parsley.

This meal must be eaten immediately after serving. In fact, the fried egg should be eaten just out of the pan. So, in order to make it in advance, cook the rice and tomato sauce and have them ready and then finish the rest when you’re ready to serve it.

Tasting tips

Rice is rich in nutrients, so include it as part of a well-balanced wholesome diet. Whole rice is particularly rich in fiber, vitamin B, carbohydrates, and minerals like potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium.

This recipe is a main dish and basically an entire meal. The best way to complement it is to eat a piece of fruit for dessert.

Both rice and banana contribute a lot of energy and the combination is ideal for people with significant physical and intellectual wear such as children and athletes. For this reason, it’s also better to eat it for lunch, not dinner.

The fiber contained in the rice helps regulate intestinal transit and is quite filling. Some people eat it with sausage or a meat cut, although the egg already provides the protein you need.

A happy egg face.
The fried egg in Cuban rice provides the protein your body needs but you can add other meats.

Some useful tips for a perfect Cuban rice

This recipe is affordable and quite simple to make so anyone with a basic level of experience in the kitchen can make it. There are a few things to take into account in order to get it just right.

Using round grain rice varieties is common when preparing dishes such as paella, boiled rice, or casserole. Any type of long-grain, such as basmati or jasmine, is great for al-dente rice.

As for the tomato sauce, a homemade one will make your dish tastier, of course. It takes more time, for sure, but you can always make large batches of it and store them in the freezer.

The best plantains for Cuban rice are those that are ripe. They won’t be as sweet otherwise. Make sure they’re not too overripe as they’ll disintegrate when you try to fry them!

Finally, the best way to eat it is by grabbing a little bit of every ingredient so as to create the perfect tasting experience. You’ll surely enjoy the exceptional combination of flavors and textures with our Cuban rice with plantain and egg.

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  • Álvarez-Falcón, Ana-Luisa, and Lluis Serra Majem. “Nutrición y gastronomía en Canarias.” Nutricion Hospitalaria 36 (2019).