Sunday, May 7, 2017

Arroz con pollo- every mamacita has a great one!

Arroz con pollo (aka chicken and rice) is like a Mexican version of Spanish paella and it's delicious.  Perfect for a family dinner, your next dinner party or for a pot luck.  I like to double the recipe and tuck away half in the freezer- two portions per foil container- for weekday dinners.

Serve with a green salad and voila!

To serve 8...


16            bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 2 pounds), or a combination of thighs and           drumsticks, rinsed and patted dry
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
6 tbsp      olive oil
2              onion, finely chopped
2              green pepper, seeded, and chopped
2              red pepper, seeded, and chopped
6              garlic cloves, chopped
4              plum tomatoes, halved, seeded, and chopped
1 tsp        ground cayenne pepper
4              bay leaves
4 tbsp      tomato paste
2 cups     basmati rice
2 small packets    (2 1/2 tsp) Sazón seasoning, available at South American grocers
1 tsp       saffron threads
6 cups     chicken broth
Hot sauce, to taste
4 tbsp     fresh cilantro, chopped
4 tbsp     flat leaf parsley

Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Brown the chicken thighs, turning once, until golden, approximately10 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

Drain half the oil from the pan and return the pan to the heat. Add the onion, peppers, garlic, tomatoes, cayenne, and bay leaves.   Cook, stirring, until the onion begins to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until it begins to caramelize, 3 to 4 minutes.

Add the rice, Sazón, and saffron and cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in the chicken stock, season with salt, pepper, and hot sauce, stir, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer and nestle the chicken thighs skin side up in the rice. Cook, partially covered, until the rice has absorbed the liquid and the chicken is cooked through, 25 to 30 minutes. If the chicken skin is not crisp, place the pan under a hot broiler until the chicken is crispy and golden brown on top.

To serve, remove the bay leaves, sprinkle the cilantro and parsley over the rice, and gently stir to incorporate. Serve directly from the pan.

You can serve this dish with a side of yogourt to which you have added grated lime rind.  Have hot sauce ready to serve as well.

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