Rice 'n' peas

Go Caribbean with this classic, aromatic Jamaican rice dish. Great on its own or with tasty jerk chicken or pork fillet.
Serves: 6-8
Prep time: 5 mins
Cooking time: 2 hrs
Costs: Cheap as chips


  • 250g (8oz) dried red peas or red kidney beans, soaked overnight
  • 400ml can coconut milk
  • 6 spring onions (3 whole, 3 chopped)
  • 1 fresh sprig of thyme, plus more for serving
  • 400g (14oz) white rice
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Scotch bonnet pepper or 1 hot chilli


  1. Drain and rinse the peas or beans. Put them in a large, heavy pan with a tight-fitting lid. Add enough water to cover them, bring to the boil quickly and boil for 10 mins. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for about 2 hours until tender.
  2. Add the coconut milk, 3 whole spring onions, the thyme sprig, rice and seasoning plus enough water to come about 2.5cm (1in) above the rice and beans in the pan. Place the hot pepper or chilli on top and bring to the boil, then cover the pan, turn the heat down and let the rice steam slowly for 25-30 mins. Do not take off the lid off the pan or stir while cooking or the rice will become sticky.
  3. Remove the thyme sprig and pepper or chilli and fluff up the rice. Add the rest of the spring onions, chopped, and sprinkle with thyme sprigs for serving. Serve warm with jerk pork fillet or chicken.

Feature: Sue McMahon

Nutritional information per portion

fat 9.0g calories 354(kcal)

This nutritional information is only a guide and is based on 2,000 calories per day. For more information on eating a healthy diet, please visit the Food Standards Agency website.

Guideline Daily Amount for 2,000 calories per day are: 70g fat, 20g saturated fat, 90g sugar, 6g salt.