¡Hello friends and fellow foodies!
Some days ago I shared a very traditional recipe in Dominican cuisine: Stewed beef Dominican style. I still have a hard time trying to figure out how I missed such a traditional recipe for over a year, but then again Dominican cuisine is very rich.
The funny thing is that, despite how good a reception was for the recipe I still had more questions about a picture I shared along than about the recipe itself!
I have posted a few times already pics of very crispy and delicious rice pieces that we Dominicans call “Concon” (pronounced /Khon-Khon/) and every single time it ends up overshadowing the feature recipe! So today I’ll take some time to explain how to get it!
Concon is a very commonly consumed and traditional Dominican food, although outside of DR is very rare and almost mythical. Most haven’t heard of it.
It’s the result of cooking rice, and since Dominicans rarely have a meal without rice you can understand how concon is a very ordinary seen food. The thing is this, concon is just a by-product, you don’t cook concon, you just get it as a result of the rice getting burned mildly at the bottom of the traditional iron pot. So there’s never a lot of concon, and since it concentrates all of the seasoning, salt and fat you can imagine how tasty it can be, specially when it’s not from white rice, but when it’s from a “moro” (rice cooked along beans) or “locrio” (a rice cooked along some protein)
With white rice, people usually pour some stewed meat sauce and stewed beans, which makes it moist, without losing its natural crispiness. It’s not uncommon to what brawls over concon, as it is highly appreciated.
There you go! That was a bit about Dominican culture. Now let’s cut to the chase. How do you get a good concon?
1. Use an iron pot (caldero). Other materials make it very difficult to pull out.
2. Use traditional calderos, which have a semi circular kind of flatten shape.
3. Don’t bee too shy with the fat or oil. The reason is simple. If the rice doesn’t have fat it will adhere to the pot and the concon will be destroyed when taking out it.
4. When the rice is ready to cover, don’t move the bottom too much. That will allow a thicker concon to shape.
5. When the rice is ready, take out the rice without scraping too much the bottom.
6. Once the rice has been taken out and just the concon remains, and while the pot is still very hot put under the sink and allow water to rapidly cool off the pot (you have to turn it over).
7. Once it has cooled, take out with a big iron spoon making wide movements all around the bottom of the caldero. The concón will come out easily.
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