Arroz con Pollo served with a Green Salad

Arroz con Pollo served with a Green Salad

Arroz con Pollo with a Green Salad
Arroz con Pollo with a Green Salad

Next to Southern dishes, Mexican cuisine is my other comfort food. When my boyfriend and I started dating, I mentioned to him I wanted Spanish food. Instead, we ate at a Puerto Rican restaurant, New York City style. I was a bit confused, because I wanted enchiladas, tacos or a dish made with corn tortillas topped with a mole sauce. It doesn’t take long to realize, his other comfort food are Dominican or Puerto Rican cuisine. When he says, “Baby, I’m bringing home Spanish food. Did you want a plate?” Now I know what to expect.

I was browsing through Williams-Sonoma’s website, when I came across the recipe for Arroz con Pollo. We had the same dish a week before at a Dominican restaurant. The blandness of the dish was disappointing at this one location. Curious, I decided to try the recipe. The boyfriend quickly proclaimed the dish as another one of my best recipes. Next time, I’ll in toss in a few green olives for more tanginess.

Be aware, this dish is huge. It overflowed my 12 inch black skillet. Buen apetito!

Arroz con Pollo

Ingredients
3 lb. chicken thighs, breast halves and/or drumsticks
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 roasted red bell or piquillo peppers, cut into thick strips
4 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp. saffron threads, crushed
2 cups long-grain white rice
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup of white wine
2 Tbs. chopped fresh oregano
1 can (14 1/2 oz.) diced tomatoes with juices

Directions
{Do ahead/Ingredients separate from above list}
Clean and pat dry chicken. In a small bowl, mix 2 to 3 tbsp. of olive oil, smoked paprika, 1 crushed garlic clove, red pepper, salt and pepper. Mix chicken and seasoned oil mixture. Place in a bowl to marinade for use later in the day or the next day. Another option, place in a freezer bag and freeze for at most one-month. Defrost in the fridge before proceeding to the next step.

Marinate chicken before cooking and to save time
Marinate chicken before cooking and to save time

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. If not doing the “do ahead step” above, season the chicken generously with salt and pepper. In a large ovenproof fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the chicken and cook, turning once or twice, until golden brown on both sides, about 6 minutes total. Transfer the chicken to a plate.

3. Add the onion, roasted peppers and garlic to the drippings in the pan, reduce the heat to medium and sauté until the vegetables are softened, 4 to 5 minutes.

4. Stir the saffron into the vegetables, and then add the rice, stirring to coat all the grains. Stir in the broth, wine and oregano and bring to a simmer. Return the chicken and any juices from the plate to the pan. Cover the pan, transfer to the oven and bake for 45 minutes.

{Meanwhile}
Prep the salad. See recipe below.

5. Uncover the pan and stir in the tomatoes with their juice, salt and pepper. Cover and continue to bake until the rice is tender and most of the liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes more. Serve directly from the pan. Serves 4 to 6.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma website.

The Salad

Green Salad served with Arroz con Pollo
Green Salad served with Arroz con Pollo

Ingredients
Pre-wash bag of green lettuce leaves (I like the one with the grated carrots)
1 small thinly sliced red onion
½ cup of black, pitted kalamata olives
4 oz. feta cheese, crumbed/chopped
1 cup of grape tomatoes, halved
1 bunch of radishes, leaves and stems removed, sliced
Salt and pepper to taste
sherry vinegar
olive oil
fresh lime juice

Directions
1. Toss first 7 ingredients together.
2. Allow guests to sprinkle salad with sherry vinegar, olive oil and fresh lime juice to their taste.
3. Serve with Arroz con Pollo.

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