Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Rice Pileau (Also Pilau. And Perlo. And Pilaf…)

RileyAdamsFoodBlogPostpic_thumb_thumb[3]As I write this, the children have a day off from school because of the snow and ice in our area. They’re having a blast playing with their friends. Their faces are red with the cold and they’re hungry all the time! What kind of food am I cooking for them? Something hot and filling, of course. Something like Southern-style pilaf, or rice pileau. (Also spelled pilau and perlo.)

A South Carolinian will most likely pronounce this recipe ‘perlo,’ as I do, since I grew up in SC. Non-Southerners would know a variation of the dish as pilaf (although your version likely doesn’t have pork in it.)

I do know that pileau was a popular one-pot dish for the Gullah people (they speak an English-based Creole with words of African origin, as well) in the Sea Island areas of South Carolina and Georgia.



2.5 to 3 pounds of country style bone in pork ribs
3 cups rice
6 cups of the RESERVED broth created from boiling the ribs


pileau2Fill one large pot with water, add pork ribs, and 1 Tablespoon salt (or to taste)

Boil until the meat falls off the bone, approximately an hour and a half
Strain the meat and cool on a plate.
RESERVE the broth the meat is cooked in
Once meat is cool separate the meat from the bones and fat.
Discard bones & fat.
Shred meat into bite sized pieces and add meat to the pot.
Add 6 cups of the broth from boiling the meat back to the pot.
Bring to a boil
Add 3 cups of rice
Add 1 Tablespoon salt (or to taste)
Add pepper to taste

pileau3Cover the pot and simmer until rice is fluffy and done. Approximately 40 minutes.

Hope you’ll enjoy it! And…stay warm!

Delicious and Suspicious (July 6 2010) Riley Adams
Pretty is as Pretty Dies –Elizabeth Spann Craig

Be sure to enter Julie’s contest to celebrate her new release!

Julie says:

This one is for all you fast readers out there who devour books

as fast as you get your hands on them!

I want to send one lucky winner a $10 bookstore gift certificate.

How to win it?

Simply email me JulieHyzy (at) gmail (dot) com -- put CHARACTER or CONTEST in the subject. In the body of your email, answer a question (or two):

1) Who is your favorite *new* character in Buffalo West Wing?

2) Why is he/she your favorite of the newbies?

(I really love to know how readers relate to new characters, so this is enormously helpful for me!)

Answer one question, you're entered once. Answer both, you're entered twice.

It's that easy.

There's no right or wrong answer. The winner will be chosen at random. No matter which of the newbies you love (or love to hate), just providing an answer gets you in the running. (BTW, there's one character we haven't seen since book #2. If he's your favorite, that's fine too.)


I will announce the winner sometime on Friday, January 14, 2011

I'll announce a winner a week from today. So many of you have emailed to let me know they've already read it, so I thought this would be a perfect way to pick your brains before I start book #6 (#5, as yet unnamed, is done).

Thanks in advance, and happy reading!


  1. This recipe sounds delicious and perfect for this crazy winter weather we're having. It also looks like an easy recipe to prepare.

    Thoughts in Progress

  2. I love to make this with chicken, making sure to boil the chicken (for this, I prefer thighs) with the skin on so you can extract all that lovely flavor from the fat! Love it, love it, love it! ~Nurse JudyMac

  3. Perlo it is for me as well Elizabeth. Mom makes this all the time when he cold weather starts coming around. With all this snow ( kids out again today cause of it ) she said she was going to make some this weekend. Hope she does I love it. So easy to make. Thanks for sharing this with us.

    The World of Book Reviews

  4. Now how come I've never thought to make this with pork?! I've always used chicken, but the pork sounds delicious!!!
    (snow day here today too, Elizabeth - stay warm and safe!!).

  5. Oh my gosh, Elizabeth - my mom used to make rice pilaf when I was a kid. I loved it and asked her to make it constantly. Unfortunately, I never got the recipe from her -- though I have to believe it was one of those she just kept in her head -- and I've never been able to get it right. You've given me hope to recreate this dish for my family. Thank you!

  6. Pork - the other white meat - that is so versatile! Great recipe share, Elizabeth. Thank you.


  7. Oh how I wish I had some pork ribs right now! This sounds perfect for the snow and cold. :)

  8. Elizabeth, my first thought was -- no garlic, no paprika, no seasoning? But everyone is raving about it so I'm going to try it exactly as you describe!

    who shoveled *everything* yesterday and it's all back again today

  9. What a fantastic comfort food recipe for this winter weather. I'm very excited about trying this! I just know I'll love the flavor that pork ribs bring to the pot. I just LOVED SC when I had a chance to visit a few years back. I even took a Gullah tour and found the history absolutely fascinating. Thanks again for sharing this!

    ~ Cleo Coffeehouse
    (BTW - We're buried again in NYC, too! But this time, our City Hall is on the ball. Snow plows out, all night long. Roads safely passable. Huzzah! I hope everyone stays safe and warm this week. I know the storm is still heading North.)

  10. OH BOY a left over pork ribs (maybe pulled pork in my future) recipe!!! Love it. We got socked in with 6 inches of snow over the weekend, just now seeing the streets cleared for driving.

    And, BTW, I am now 5 for 6 in my effort to collect the murderesses. I made a pasta dish from Julie's "BUFFALO WEST WING" and posted it today.

    So, Wendy, when is the next in the Mystery A La Mode series coming out so I can have the whole set (shouldn't I get a set of steak knives if I finish the set???

  11. Mason--Isn't it crazy weather? Hope it all melts...soon!

    NurseJudyMac--Chicken thighs would be perfect with this recipe, too! Yum!

    Babs--Yes, my kids are at home today, too. And I have 5 teenage boys upstairs! ACK!!! I'm ready for school to be back in now...

    Kaye--Oh, it's great with chicken, too. Hope Harley Barley is having fun in the snow!

    Julie--Hope it'll bring back some memories for you!

    Avery--It sure is, and it's easy to forget about it, too. But it's good stuff. :)

    Janel--Hope we'll all be able to dig out and go to the store soon!

    Krista--We like it as is, but garlic never hurts anything (cause I'm a fan of garlic! :) ) Hope the snow stops and you won't have to shovel anymore!

    Cleo--I'm so glad you didn't get trapped this time! Sounds like this snow is a lot better than the last one. And..the Gullah culture is incredibly rich with both art, cooking, and language. Glad you were able to take such a great tour!

    A Year on the Grill--Sounds like a real mess, Dave! Hope you're able to shovel yourself out soon! Pork ribs--yes! And thanks for checking out the murderesses! I think Wendy has a release later this year, but I'll let her write you back more about it!

  12. Methinks I spotted some Crowder peas aside that delicious perlo! I *know* I spied a good biscuit! Thanks, Elizabeth, for good food and good memories.

  13. Molly--You're a good veggie spotter! Makes a nice meal, doesn't it? Thanks so much for dropping by. :)

  14. Another simple recipe to add to my collection.

  15. I saw Gullah and was immediately transported back to when the kids were little and we watched Gullah Gullah Island on Nickelodeon!! I loved that show...they often did "field trips" to the market places of Gullah folks and I always wanted to go there...if I'm not mistaken Binyah binyah means thanks!!!
    Great recipe I'll make soon...

  16. Dru--Hope you'll enjoy it!

    Nanc--You know, my son loved that show! He's almost 14...we must have kids the same age. Great show and I loved that they were sharing the Gullah history with children around the country. :)