Authentic Puerto Rican Sofrito
Sofrito is the secret to many Hispanic Caribbean recipes. It is a fragrant aromatic puree of peppers, onions, garlic, herbs, and olive oil. The magic herb in this fragrant mixture is cilantro. My family's recipe produces a sofrito that is very flavorful, complex and oh-so-delicious! Use it in soups and stews as well as in rice dishes. Freeze whatever portions will not be used within 2 weeks. They will keep for about 3 months in the freezer.
Recipe Summary test
Substitute yellow onion with white Spanish onion if desired. Substitute the green and red bell peppers for a cubanelle (Italian frying pepper) and a roasted red pepper if desired. If doing so, skip steps 1 to 3. The ajicitos dulces can be substituted with small Italian sweet peppers. If you are unable to find culantro, use 2 more bunches cilantro. If you are unable to find Caribbean oregano brujo, use 2 tablespoons fresh oregano or 1 tablespoon dried oregano instead. Plum tomatoes can be replaced with 2 teaspoons tomato paste. Substitute vinegar for the water if preferred.
Sofrito also makes a great marinade when combined in a 2-to-1 ratio with an acid (vinegar, lemon, lime, or bitter orange juice), oil, and 1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper.
The mixture can also be frozen in cubes - just remember to float olive oil on top of the cubes as well. When frozen, separate the cubes and store them in freezer bags.