Quick Coconut Chicken Pelau (recipe)

Coconut Chicken Pelau (quick)

Pelau is one of Trindad’s signature national dishes and I would argue its also our definitive one-pot meal. This is the meal that we make whenever we have informal gatherings (‘limes’) either at home, at a river or on the beach. It also feeds hungry revellers at Carnival time and provides a comfortable rhythm to a lazy Sunday afternoon. Cooked in coconut milk and seared in caramelized sugar (after being marinated in a garlicky marinade) the chicken in a good pelau is soft, falling off the bone and delectably (yet not overpoweringly) sweet. A good pelau is a work of art and this version is a quicker truncated version of the classic recipe that retains the authenticity and method of preparation. However, if time and inclination permit, I highly recommend that you prepare this recipe in the more lengthy time-honored manner embodied by my father’s recipe Bertie’s Trinidad Pelau


Coconut Chicken Pelau (Quick)

Ingredients:

2?Ǭ? – 3 lbs. Chicken pieces (seasoned the night before with 1 rounded tsp salt, 1 rounded tsp pepper, chopped chives, 1 tsp thyme, 4 cloves chopped garlic, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp Angostura bitters, 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce, 1 tsp. soy sauce and 1 tbsp. ketchup)
2 c. Rice, washed
2 c. Coconut milk (unsweetened)
2 c. Water
1 Large onion
1 Sweet pepper
1 13.5 oz tin Pigeon peas, drained
2 – 3 tbsp. Vegetable oil
?Ǭ? c. Sugar
Salt & pepper to taste
1 Scotch Bonnet pepper


mise en place!

Directions:

1. Season the chicken (as stated above) the night before. It helps to ‘stab’ the chicken pieces as well to allow the flavour of the marinade to really permeate :)


Marinating the chicken

2. Heat the oil in a large dutch oven (‘d big pot’)
3. Add sugar and allow to burn until dark brown
4. Add seasoned meat and stir until pieces are well coated with burnt sugar; brown for 5 minutes


Brownin' d' meat :)

5. Stir rice into chicken and turn often till well blended; cook for 3 minutes more


Stirfrying rice

6. Add onion, scotch bonnet pepper and peas and stir fry for a few seconds (you may want to make sure to keep the pepper at the top of the pot cos if that thing bursts, well I can’t help you any further ;) )


Be careful with that pepper!

7. Add additional salt, pepper, coconut milk and water.


Coconut milk is added

8. Bring to the boil, lower heat, cover and simmer until rice is cooked and all liquid has evaporated (about 25-30 minutes). If rice is still hard, add more liquid and continue to cook longer. Pelau can also be baked in oven (this is my preferred method). Cover pot with tin foil, place in oven and bake at 350?Ǭ? for 25-30 minutes, add more liquid if necessary. Preparing the rice in the oven prevents burning at the bottom, but some people love the burnt bits (we call it ‘bun bun’) for reasons I’m still trying to figure out :D

9. Remove pepper before serving!!

Serves: 8-12

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

About 

Passionate foodie, founder of Trinigourmet and Caribbean Lifestyle Maven. Author of "Glam By Request: 30+ Easy Caribbean Recipes"

You are here: Home // beans, chicken, entrées, meat, poultry // Quick Coconut Chicken Pelau (recipe)

  • http://glutenfreebay.blogspot.com Gluten-Free By The Bay

    I do have an LJ rss feed:

    syndicated.livejournal.com/glutenfreebay/profile

    Nice to meet you!

  • http://glutenfreebay.blogspot.com Gluten-Free By The Bay

    I do have an LJ rss feed:

    syndicated.livejournal.com/glutenfreebay/profile

    Nice to meet you!

  • Lynn

    So I was trying to find a sub for pigeon peas and happened upon a sight: www.soupsong.com/fpigeonp.html.

    Says here that, “Interestingly, pigeon peas have a reputation for being slightly narcotic…possibly accounting for especially deep naps after dinner….”

    Interesting….hmmm

  • Lynn

    So I was trying to find a sub for pigeon peas and happened upon a sight: www.soupsong.com/fpigeonp.html.

    Says here that, “Interestingly, pigeon peas have a reputation for being slightly narcotic…possibly accounting for especially deep naps after dinner….”

    Interesting….hmmm

  • Lynn

    So I was trying to find a sub for pigeon peas and happened upon a sight: www.soupsong.com/fpigeonp.html.

    Says here that, “Interestingly, pigeon peas have a reputation for being slightly narcotic…possibly accounting for especially deep naps after dinner….”

    Interesting….hmmm

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Hmmm that explains so much about pelau’s legendary powers…. it really does!! :D

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Hmmm that explains so much about pelau’s legendary powers…. it really does!! :D

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Hmmm that explains so much about pelau’s legendary powers…. it really does!! :D

  • http://chennette.wordpress.com Chennette

    I like bun bun…it’s like all the best flavour of the pelau concentrated and then a little burnt, forming a nice crusty meld with the rice and cooking juices, mmmmm. I like it in biriyani too, where possible. I also like the brown spots on dhalpuri roti – crispy, although my mother would regard it as ruined.

  • http://chennette.wordpress.com Chennette

    I like bun bun…it’s like all the best flavour of the pelau concentrated and then a little burnt, forming a nice crusty meld with the rice and cooking juices, mmmmm. I like it in biriyani too, where possible. I also like the brown spots on dhalpuri roti – crispy, although my mother would regard it as ruined.

  • http://chennette.wordpress.com Chennette

    I like bun bun…it’s like all the best flavour of the pelau concentrated and then a little burnt, forming a nice crusty meld with the rice and cooking juices, mmmmm. I like it in biriyani too, where possible. I also like the brown spots on dhalpuri roti – crispy, although my mother would regard it as ruined.

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Oh gawd I’m totally with you on the brown spots on dhalpuri (and tortillaz too)!!NYAM!!! but bun bun??? … ewww na na na allyuh could keep dat!! :D :D :D

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Oh gawd I’m totally with you on the brown spots on dhalpuri (and tortillaz too)!!NYAM!!! but bun bun??? … ewww na na na allyuh could keep dat!! :D :D :D

  • http://mlaurels.blogspot.com Marsha

    My mother’s bun bun was always a little too BUN! :(

  • http://mlaurels.blogspot.com Marsha

    My mother’s bun bun was always a little too BUN! :(

  • boo

    ooo this sounds yummy too! i have a question, i only use brown rice (cause white rice makes the blood sugars unhappy). since it has to cook a lot longer would it be okay to cook it like half way first then put it in the chicken do you think?

    • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

      brown rice is totally fine boo :) we use it as well :) if you are using brown rice prepare it exactly the same. the dish is very forgiving and the meat will only be more tender and flavorful :D

  • boo

    ooo this sounds yummy too! i have a question, i only use brown rice (cause white rice makes the blood sugars unhappy). since it has to cook a lot longer would it be okay to cook it like half way first then put it in the chicken do you think?

    • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

      brown rice is totally fine boo :) we use it as well :) if you are using brown rice prepare it exactly the same. the dish is very forgiving and the meat will only be more tender and flavorful :D

  • Danny

    I’m making this now! The pot is simmering now and the whole apartment smells delicious.

    And my hands have completely recovered from making the pepper sauce (but it took 6 hours of pain last night!) Incidentally, I’m now the proud owner of some thick yellow gloves.

    The pelau and pepper sauce should be worth it tho!

  • Danny

    I’m making this now! The pot is simmering now and the whole apartment smells delicious.

    And my hands have completely recovered from making the pepper sauce (but it took 6 hours of pain last night!) Incidentally, I’m now the proud owner of some thick yellow gloves.

    The pelau and pepper sauce should be worth it tho!

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Danny – like yuh cooking yuh way through meh blog? :) hehehehe so sorry about the hands tho hahaha :) how’d it come out? :D

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Danny – like yuh cooking yuh way through meh blog? :) hehehehe so sorry about the hands tho hahaha :) how’d it come out? :D

  • http://www.recipezaar.com/member/341142 JulieMango

    OOOOOOOOOHHHHHH yum. Ate this last night at a friends b’day lime. A national dish along with callaloo if you ask me. Have you ever noticed that every one’s pelau tastes just a little tiny bit different? No one makes it quite the same. Here’s what mine looks like www.recipezaar.com/230630 if you care to take a peek – sorry the pic is not as tantalizing as yours:-) I’m like you – hold the bun bun please. BTW don’t always have the time to leave a comment but love your blog and the pictures are fantastic.

  • http://www.recipezaar.com/member/341142 JulieMango

    OOOOOOOOOHHHHHH yum. Ate this last night at a friends b’day lime. A national dish along with callaloo if you ask me. Have you ever noticed that every one’s pelau tastes just a little tiny bit different? No one makes it quite the same. Here’s what mine looks like www.recipezaar.com/230630 if you care to take a peek – sorry the pic is not as tantalizing as yours:-) I’m like you – hold the bun bun please. BTW don’t always have the time to leave a comment but love your blog and the pictures are fantastic.

  • Ant….

    I AM MISSING MY DAILY DOES OF TRINIGOURMET.COM.
    COME BACK SOON!!!!!

    -Ant
    U.S.A

  • Ant….

    I AM MISSING MY DAILY DOES OF TRINIGOURMET.COM.
    COME BACK SOON!!!!!

    -Ant
    U.S.A

  • Ant….

    spelling correction:

    missing my daily DOSE of trinigourmet.com

    -Ant
    ps…why didn’t you all tell me about Diana’s POWER MINTS and KC Candy GINGER MINTS?!!!!!
    THE BEST!!!!

    I had to get one of my sorority sisters to get me some from MIAMI…wow!!!!

  • Ant….

    spelling correction:

    missing my daily DOSE of trinigourmet.com

    -Ant
    ps…why didn’t you all tell me about Diana’s POWER MINTS and KC Candy GINGER MINTS?!!!!!
    THE BEST!!!!

    I had to get one of my sorority sisters to get me some from MIAMI…wow!!!!

  • Ant….

    spelling correction:

    missing my daily DOSE of trinigourmet.com

    -Ant
    ps…why didn’t you all tell me about Diana’s POWER MINTS and KC Candy GINGER MINTS?!!!!!
    THE BEST!!!!

    I had to get one of my sorority sisters to get me some from MIAMI…wow!!!!

  • bunta

    that pelau need’s to be much darker than the top pic indicates it is. Otherwise, it’s looking good

  • bunta

    that pelau need’s to be much darker than the top pic indicates it is. Otherwise, it’s looking good

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Bunta – yeah, that’s one of the downfalls of it being a ‘quick’ recipe. It’s a good stand in but no substitute for the real REAL thing. Don’t worry I have that posted here too :) Check it out -> www.trinigourmet.com/index.php/berties-trinidad-pelau-recipe/

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Bunta – yeah, that’s one of the downfalls of it being a ‘quick’ recipe. It’s a good stand in but no substitute for the real REAL thing. Don’t worry I have that posted here too :) Check it out -> www.trinigourmet.com/index.php/berties-trinidad-pelau-recipe/

  • Sarah

    I makin it now too, but i like to put cauliflower n carrots an corn in it too n of course pimento an ting too na. Tryyyy it!

  • Sarah

    I makin it now too, but i like to put cauliflower n carrots an corn in it too n of course pimento an ting too na. Tryyyy it!

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Sarah – I recently became a hardcore believer in pimentos so yes, I will definitely try it :)

  • http://www.TriniGourmet.com Sarina

    Sarah – I recently became a hardcore believer in pimentos so yes, I will definitely try it :)

  • http://www.largepot.net Large Pot

    Great! Thank for information, I'm looking for it for a long time,

  • http://www.largepot.net Large Pot

    Great! Thank for information, I'm looking for it for a long time,

© 2010-2014 TriniGourmet.com All Rights Reserved -- Copyright notice by Blog Copyright

Trinigourmet is a division of SarinaNow.com