Cookbook:Rice Tamale (Pastel de Arroz)

Cookbook | Ingredients | Recipes | Cuisine of Colombia

Rice Tamale (Pastel de Arroz)
Pastel Arroz.jpg
Category Colombian recipes
Servings 6
Time Cook 1 hour

El Pastel de Arroz (Rice Tamale) is typical dish from Cartagena, Colombia. It is very common to find it on Sundays at the beach or as a Christmas Eve favourite.


To prepare rice (Oreado rice)
To fill the "pasteles"


To prepare rice
  1. Mix well all ingredients listed in this subsection into a large Pyrex baking dish.
  2. Let stand one day long under the sun (this is called "Orear").
Building the "Pasteles"
  1. Place one leaf of cabbage on top of a clean working area.
  2. Spread ⅛ cup of "Oreado Rice" over the cabbage leaf.
  3. Place one unit of each meat evenly through the pastel.
  4. Place pickles, chickpeas, capers, pickled onions on top of the meats.
  5. Place two slices of potato and two slices of tomato. Cover with another 1/8 cup of "Oreado Rice".
  6. Cover with one leaf of cabbage.
  7. Place one washed Lobster Claw / Banana leaf in a plain working area. Carefully put the pastel over the leaf and roll firmly. Cover with a second leaf and roll firmly. Tie with thread.
  8. Cook in a large pan cover with water, vinegar and salt for two hours.

Notes, tips, and variationsEdit

  1. Onoto substitutes: pinch of paprika (for color not flavor); an equal amount of saffron; yellow food coloring; hot paprika; or equal parts turmeric and paprika.
  2. You can prepare your own pickles: For "6 "pasteles" boil 1½ cup or water, ½ cup of vinegar, 4 Tbs of brown sugar and 1 large carrot cut into 6 sticks, 2 celery sticks cut in three pieces each, 6 green beans cut in half, one large red bell pepper cut into 12 sticks, and one small cauliflower. Let cool down and keep refrigerated overnight, before using it.