Saturday, April 07, 2018

Spanish Style Chicken and Rice

This was one of my favorite meals when I was growing up. This is another braised dish, this time with chicken, onions and garlic, tomatoes, peppers, rice, sherry, saffron, cloves and peas. It is very aromatic and quite delicious. The rice soaks up the flavors of the veggies, sherry, saffron and cloves and the topping of hot peas and some pimento or roasted red peppers is colorful and finishes off this one pot meal. It's perfect for a chilly spring evening. It didn't take long to clean the plate.

My mother used to make this with a whole chicken, usually at least 2 and a half pounds of chicken. Since Sweetie and I are not a large family with eight children, I cut the recipe in half. I also used boneless, skinless chicken thighs, which worked well. The thighs take well to braising and by being boned and skinless, the flavors penetrated the chicken really well. They may cook a little faster, too.

Arroz con Pollo (Spanish Chicken and Rice)

1 frying chicken (about 2½ lbs. ) cut up
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium green pepper, chopped (I used yellow bell pepper)
1 can peeled tomatoes (19 oz.)
¼ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon paprika
1 cup water
1-2 bay leaves
1/3 cup dry sherry
1 pinch Spanish saffron
2 whole cloves
1 cup long grain white rice, uncooked
1 cup peas, cooked and hot
1 pimento, cut up

Dry chicken pieces. If desired, season chicken with salt. Brown in hot oil. Add onion, garlic, and green pepper; brown 5 minutes longer. Add remaining ingredients, except for rice, peas, and pimento.

Cover and simmer 15 minutes. 

Add rice. Bring to a boil, stir; cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Garnish with peas and pimento. 

Serves 6 - 8.

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