Note: According to her daughter: Rumor had it that Gina often shared this recipe (but always left out a few ingredients…..). But this is her real and complete recipe. And it’s good, too.
½ lb salt pork, diced small
2 onions, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 (35 oz) can crushed pear tomatoes
10 whole cloves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried marjoram
1 pinch saffron threads
2-3 bay leaves
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
1 datil pepper, chopped
4 cups water
2 pounds shrimp, shelled and deveined
3 cups long-grain rice, washed 3 times
Render the salt pork in a heavy-bottomed pot and then add the onions and green pepper. Saute the onions and pepper until they are limp and then add the tomatoes, cloves, thyme, marjoram, saffron, bay leaves, salt, pepper and datil pepper. Cook a few minutes until thick. Add the water. Bring to a rolling boil. Add the shrimp and the rice. Stir, cover and lower heat to very low. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes. Stir and remove from heat. Allow to stand for an additional 30 minutes or until the rice is done.
Note: Chicken, pork or ham pilau is made the same way, except they should be browned before adding them to the tomato mixture. Squid (cut into bite-size pieces) may be used instead of shrimp.