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Arroz con pollo. I just love the way the name rolls off my tongue. I also love how it rolls into my mouth once it’s ready to be eaten. As Old Man Winter bears down on much of the country without a single regard for you or your sanity, comforting meals like arroz con pollo can be such a treat.  It’s the kind of meal that rewards you days later as it doubles in flavor and can be frozen for future months when the cold renders you powerless. With the power of flavorful food, we can make it through this winter ya’ll…one day at a time.

 



INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tbsp. olive oil or annatto oil
  • 1 lb. chicken pieces (I prefer dark meat for more flavor)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 bunch of cilantro
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 8 oz. can of tomato sauce
  • 1 tsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 12 oz. bottle of beer
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 small red bell pepper, cored, seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 cups long-grain white rice
  • 1/4 tsp. saffron threads (optional)
  • 1 cup green peas (optional)
  • 1 cup pimientos or whole green olives

 

DIRECTIONS

Heat the olive or annatto oil in a large pot over medium heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper then sauté in small batches to brown on both sides. Remove from pot and set aside.

Add a little more oil to the pot if needed and sauté the saffron, onion, peppers and garlic until the onion is translucent.

Stir in the rice and tomato sauce and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Add the stock, beer, tomato paste, bay leaf, olives, peas and all seasoning to taste. Lay the chicken pieces over the top. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover tightly and simmer for about 30 minutes. Do not stir too often, or the rice will get soggy.

Remove from heat and let rest covered for ten minutes. Mix all the ingredients gently with a fork, garnish with peas and pimiento.



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