Thursday, September 22, 2011

RECIPE - Rich Whore's Rice (Arroz de Puta Rica)

Italy has its slutty spaghetti (spaghetti alla puttanesca) and France has its lovely little pastry called pet de putain (We'll leave this one up to you to translate on your own or with Google translator), so why shouldn't Brazil have a recipe called Rich Whore's Rice? There's no reason why it shouldn't and in fact it does have exactly such a recipe.

A traditional dish from the interior state of Goiás, this combination of rice, smoked and preserved meats, olive and palm hearts supposedly got its name because it was the favorite dish of one of the most successful and richest madams in Goiás and of both the girls and the customers in the high-class brothel she ran. According to food historian Caloca Fernandes, though, the dish was probably a very simple plate of rice and sausage in its early days and was so basic and cheap that is was called Poor Whore's Rice. Only when better meats and extravagant vegetables were added did the poor whore in the title become a rich one.

This recipe, translated and adapted from Sr. Fernandes' book Viagem Gastronômico através do Brazil, makes a great one-dish meal - meat, rice, vegetables and seasonings all combined in one big pot. You know the expression "Dine like a king". Now you know how to dine like a rich whore, too.
RECIPE - Rich Whore's Rice (Arroz de Puta Rica)
Serves 8

4 thick slices bacond, chopped
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 link Italian sausage, hot or sweet, crumbled
2 boneless chicken thighs, cubed
1 lb (500 gr) kielbasa or other garlic sausage, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups white rice
salt and pepper to taste
6 cups water
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels (thawed if frozen)
1 cup fresh or frozen peas (thawed if frozen)
1/2 cup green olives, pitted and chopped
1/2 cup chopped palm hearts
1/2 cup seedless raisins
Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the bacon cubes and fry until crisp and browned. Add the fresh Italian sausage meat, the cubed chicken and stir-fry until all the meat is browned.

In a pan or kettle, bring the 6 cups water to the boil. Reserve, keeping at a slow boil.

Add the sliced garlic sausage and garlic. Fry briefly but don't let the garlic brown. Add the rice and fry until all the grains and coated with oil and are transparent. Add the boiling water, stir, add salt and pepper to taste. When the mixture returns to the boil, cover the pan and cook over low heat until the rice and meats are tender and the liquid is absorbed.

Add the corn and peas, and cook for another minute or so, or until they are heated through. Stir in the chopped olives, the palm hearts and raisins. Toss everything together and transfer to a deep serving bowl. Serve immediately.

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