The Fish and Tomato recipe previously presented is just begging for more creativity and the standard ingredients in Puerto Rican or Caribbean Kitchens and personal preference would help you make choices. I don’t always have fresh bell peppers but there is usually a bottle of Sofrito in the refrigerator. Sofrito is just a flavoring blend with various ingredients usually bell pepper, onions, cilantro, and tomatoes.
Of course, you could use Sazon which is a spice blend which adds a lovely natural red color to the pot and another option would be to add a can (8 oz.) of Spanish Style Tomato Sauce. In the two variations presented today, I chose to add beans. Using Red beans would be a typical Puerto Rican Style recipe whereas my using black beans was just a personal adaptation for my own personal preference.
1 T. Olive Oil
2 cloves garlic minced
1 medium onion rough cut
1 slice 1/8 inch of hot pepper (Optional)
1-2 oz. Dark Rum
2 T Safrito with tomato paste
1 can diced tomatoes with juice
1 can Red Beans with liquid
½ tsp Adobo
1 packet of Sazon
4-6 oz Piece of Fish with or without bones
1. Place oil, rum, hot pepper, onion, and garlic in Coffeepot, place on warmer and heat for 1 hour.
2. Add seasoned salt, beans and tomatoes heat for about 2 hours or other convenient amount of time.
3. When pot is hot, add fish and cook for an additional 2 hours.
The meal made above uses the more strongly flavored black beans and the biggest difference was I drained the dark liquid from the beans and rinsed them and drained them again before adding the beans to the pot. I didn’t want the dark liquid to alter the color of the red sauce.
When it comes to cooking Puerto Rican and Caribbean Foods, “To each, his own.”