Recipe - Somali rice and beef

Somali Rice and Beef

As a woman from Mogadishu, Somalia, taught Lindsay Sterling in Portland, ME 2013

Serves 4-6
Cooking time: 45 minutes

1 chicken bouillion cube or packet
2 shakes lemon pepper
Or pinch black pepper, dash lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon or 1 cinnamon stick
1 Tbsp + 1/4 tsp whole cumin
1 Tbsp + 1/4 tsp whole coriander
3 cups white long grain rice
1/2 yellow onion, minced + 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
2 Tbsp vegetable oil + 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 lb. beef sliced into 1/4" slices
1/2 tsp Goya sazon con achiote or Indian red food coloring
ingredients for salad
oil and vinegar for dressing

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil. Soak rice. Cook meat in a separate pot, just covered with water on high.

In a separate medium to large pot (with tight fitting lid), saute diced yellow onion in 2 Tbsp oil. Grind all whole cumin and coriander in spice grinder together. Add 2 Tbsp of the ground spices to the cooking onions (leaving a half tsp or so for the meat later on). Also mix into the onions cinnamon, bouillon, lemon pepper, and salt. Add the rice to the spiced onions and oil. Saute  for a couple minutes, stirring to incorporate the flavorful oil throughout and to prevent burning. Add boiling water to cover the rice by 3/4 inch. Cover rice and place in oven to cook for twenty minutes.

When the meat has cooked long enough in the water to be tender, drain any excess water from the pan (hers had all evaporated by then), and add 2 Tbsp of oil, sliced onion, about 1/2 tsp of ground coriander and cumin, and salt to taste. Fry meat until it's golden brown in parts. Turn off heat.

Sprinkle Sazon con culantro y achiote or red food coloring on the top of the rice. Mix so that the rice has some red flecks in it. Serve rice with meat and onions on top. Somalians often serve this with a fresh salad (lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers) with oil and vinegar dressing.

Copyright Lindsay Sterling 2013