Parallel to 19 Iconic Harry Potter Food Moments, it is safe to say the Haitian black rice is worth the gamble and the buck. A powerhouse in flavor, the dish known in its native language as “diri djon djon” may look weird but definitely tempts you to live a little. 

Too often I have witnessed the lack of enthusiasm toward Haitian cuisine, but as time progresses people are becoming more open-minded. Nonetheless, the culture continues to infiltrate the culinary of arts industry with its diverse and lively food.

It is not your typical black rice, so don't try to compare. Risky in visage but amazing in every way, the black rice is made with dried mushrooms, and it is nothing short of glorious. A delectable entree, this dish is filled with rich herbs and vegetables that give off a savory taste as well as a vibrant black, grayish color.

You can say it takes after the Haitian culture in style. It is what I like to call a stand-alone, a dish that requires no sides or sauces because it is that freaking awesome all by itself. In short, it can only be described as a fiesta in your mouth that keeps going.

Fair warning: beware of the cloves! Though imperative to the mouthwatering taste of the black rice, they leave behind a bitter taste on one's palette when eaten. Lastly, the process requires a lot of TLC, but no worries — I am providing you with an easy-to-follow combo recipe that will help you add the perfect dish to your next potluck rotation impressing your friends.  

Haitian Black Rice

  • Prep Time:15 mins
  • Cook Time:40 mins
  • Total Time:55 mins
  • Servings:4
  • Medium


  • 2 cups dried black mushrooms djon djon
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 garlic cloves crushed & minced
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 2 cups long-grain rice rinsed with cold water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 bouillon cube
  • 4 cloves
  • 12 ounces fresh lima beans
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 green scotch bonnet pepper
  • 1 cup epis blended herbs
Gabriella Paul
  • Step 1

    In a medium pot, soak dried black mushrooms in 4-5 cups of water and bring to a boil. Boil for about 10 minutes.

    Gabriella Paul
  • Step 2

    Strain mushrooms through a very fine sieve; discard the mushrooms and perserve the liquid.

    Gabriella Paul
  • Step 3

    Add oil to pot on medium heat. Sauté garlic and onion for 2 minutes, and then add lima beans.

    Gabriella Paul
  • Step 4

    Add mushroom water, bouillon cube, salt, epis, and cloves. Bring to boil, and then add rice. Stir for 3 minutes.

    Gabriella Paul
  • Step 5

    Boil for 10 minutes or until most of the water evaporates.

    Gabriella Paul
  • Step 6

    Set temperature to low, add thyme and, scotch bonnet pepper. Cover pot and cook for 20 minutes.

    Gabriella Paul
  • Step 7

    Turn off your burner, and let rice sit for another 10 minutes. Serve rice to your friends and family, and enjoy!

    Gabriella Paul