This is considered Haiti’s National Dish - with good reason.

1 c.   dried red kidney beans   3 cloves   minced garlic
1½ tsp.   salt   3 Tbs.   butter or oil
½ tsp.   black pepper   6-8 c.   water or chicken stock
12   whole cloves   2 c.   long-grain white rice
1 tsp.   fresh thyme   1   Habanero pepper (optional)

In a large sieve or colander wash the beans under running water. Transfer to a heavy 3-4 quart saucepan; add half the salt and spices plus 6 c. of water. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce to low, and simmer partially covered for 1-2 hours until the beans are tender but still whole. Drain in a sieve, reserving the bean liquid.

Melt the butter or oil in a heavy skillet, drop in the beans and stir for 1 minute. Add the rice and stir for 1-2 minutes more until the rice grains turn somewhat milky and opaque. Add the remaining cloves, thyme and garlic and stir for 30 seconds.

Add the reserved liquid the beans were cooked in plus enough water or chicken stock to make 4 cups. Boil about 5 minutes or until some of the liquid begins to be absorbed by the rice. Cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 30-40 minutes until the rice is tender and has absorbed all of the liquid. Taste for seasonings and set off the heat, partially covered to keep hot.

Fluff the rice and beans with a fork and serve hot.

Variations: For added flavor put a whole Habanero pepper on top of the rice and beans when you cover the pot and reduce the heat to low. Because the pepper is not cut it will add more flavor than heat to the dish.

Town and Country Creole Cooking

Traditional and Modern Recipes of Haiti

Haiti is world famous for its delicious, spice-laden foods such as rice and beans, griyo and pen patat. Town and Country brings these delicacies into your home – no matter where you live. We have included an assortment of easy traditional and modern Haitian Creole and French-influenced recipes, as well as selections from famous Haitian restaurants.

Our straightforward directions and simple format make your cooking experience as easy as possible, while striving to maintain the authenticity of Haitian cuisine. Town and Country is loaded with extras, variations, and time saving suggestions that make it a cook-friendly recipe collection.

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