Sofrito is a combination of ingredients used to give a distinctive flavor to many Puerto Rican dishes. It is mostly used when cooking legumes, rice dishes, soups and stews. The two main ingredients that give sofrito its characteristic flavor are: recao (also known as culantro) and ají dulce. Ají dulce may be substituted for bell peppers. Sofrito is also traditionally made with salted pork, cured ham, and lard. When pork is used the sofrito is cooked before storing.
The following recipe has no pork and therefore it is not cooked before storing. This allows for a quicker preparation and also makes it vegetarian friendly.
Yield: 1 quart
- 5 stems of fresh recao leaves (culantro), chopped
- 1 small bunch of fresh cilantro, chopped
- 3 Large plum tomatoes seeded and chopped
- 1 head of garlic
- 2 large Spanish yellow onions, chopped
- 15 ají dulce, seeded
- 1 large red bell peppers, seeded
- 3 large cubanelle peppers, seeded
- Grind the ingredients in a mortar and pestle or food processor, and store in the refrigerator or pour into ice cube trays to store in the freezer.
- Two or three sofrito cubes can be used in recipes that serve 6 to 8 people that require sofrito.