Make a traditional one-pot rice dish from Trinidad studded with chicken beef and salt fish
By Gary Rhodes
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 8-10
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Effort: easy


For the green seasoning

  • 3 tbsp chopped coriander
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 cm ginger
  • 2 spring onions
  • 1 lemon, juice only

For the pelau

  • 900 g chicken joints, on the bone, chopped into 16 pieces
  • 450 g stewing beef, cut into 3cm pieces
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 500 g long grain rice
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 red or green pepper, chopped
  • 300 g cooked pigeon peas, with 50ml cooking liquid (or 1 x 400g tin pigeon peas with the liquid from the tin)
  • 450 g carrots, peeled and cubed
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped garlic
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp tomato ketchup
  • 500 ml coconut milk, fresh or from a tin
  • 1 Scotch bonnet chilli
  • 225 g salt cod


1. For the green seasoning: puree all the ingredients to a smooth paste in a food processor.

2. For the pelau: mix the chicken and beef pieces; season with salt and pepper. Stir in 4 tablespoons of the green seasoning.

3. Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the sugar and caramelise to a dark brown, without stirring. Tip in the meat and stir until coated with the caramelised sugar. Cook for about 10 minutes, until the meat glistens with the caramel glaze.

4. Add the rice, stir well and cook for another 3 minutes. Stir in the onion, pepper, pigeon peas with their liquid, carrots, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce and ketchup. Stir and cook for another 2-3 minutes.

5. Pour over the coconut milk and about the same amount of water, or enough to cover the rice. Drop in the whole chilli and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil then lower the heat. Cover the pan and simmer until the rice is cooked and all liquid has evaporated (about 25-30 minutes). Top up the water during cooking if required. Finally stir in the salt fish.

6. Serve hot with coleslaw, sliced tomatoes, and lettuce leaves.

Rate This Recipe