Habichuelas Rosadas (Puerto Rican rice and beans) is the perfect compliment side dish to just about any Puerto Rican main entree. In fact, it is so tasty and filling, Habichuelas Rosadas can be taken by itself as a full meal.
Habichuelas Rosadas Recipe-
For the Beans-
- 3 cups water
- 1-3⁄4 lbs. pumpkin or acorn or butternut squash, peeled, seeded and chopped into 1/2″ cubes
- 1 tsp. annatto seeds
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 medium onion, peeled and rough chopped
- 1 small sweet bell pepper (red, yellow, or orange), cored, seeded, and rough chopped
- 1 Scotch Bonnet hot chili pepper, chopped fine
- 4 large cloves garlic, peeled and rough chopped
- 3 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro leaves
- 1⁄2 cup tomato sauce
- 15 oz. canned pink beans, juices reserved
- 3⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
For the Cooked White Rice-
- 3 cups water
- 1⁄4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups long-grain white rice
For the Rice-
- In a Dutch oven or heavy-duty, 4-quart saucepan, heat 3 cups water, 1/4 cup olive oil, and salt to a vigorous boil over high heat.
- Turn the heat down to medium, add in the 2 cups of rice and cook and a vigorous simmer, uncovered, until rice appears to be dry – about 10 to 15 minutes should do it.
- Use a large cooking fork to scrape and bring the rice on the bottom up to the top, but do not blend or mix.
- Now reduce the heat to just a gentle simmer, fork and turn the rice over again, and cook for another 10 minutes.
- Remove from the burner, cover, and keep warm until ready to serve. If the rice is a bit crunchy at this point, that is fine – that is what you want for your Habichuelas Rosadas dish.
For the Beans-
- Heat the squash and water in a 1-quart saucepan, over high heat.
- Reduce the heat to low, cover with a lid, and cook until tender – about 12 to 15 minutes should be fine.
- Now drain the squash, but reserve 1-1/2 cups of the cooking liquid.
- Next, add the annatto seeds into the cooking liquid and set aside for 5 minutes.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Into the skillet, add the onion, garlic, red bell pepper, Scotch Bonnet pepper, and cilantro; sauté this mixture for 5 minutes.
- Strain the cooking liquid through a sieve into the skillet, and discard the annatto seeds.
- Add in the squash and tomato sauce.
- Reduce heat to low and cook at a gentle simmer, stirring continuously, for about 20 minutes, or until your sauce is nicely thickened.
- Add and stir in the pink beans, juices and all, along with the salt and oregano, and cook until the beans are warmed through and the sauce has regained its thickened consistency. This should take about 15 minutes.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked white rice with the cooked beans, stir and mix and blend together well.
- Serve your Habichuelas Rosadas while still nice and warm, either by itself, or as a great side dish to other Puerto Rican main entrees.
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