Mireya’s Arroz con Pollo (Rice with Chicken)

It is almost surreal in its flavor and texture. Mireya had made this dish at home for me many times. I love the melt in your mouth chicken and savory rice. As with all great things…my friend Mireya is not available to make this for us….so I urge my readers to try the recipe and find that meal on their tables as I have….LET’s Make some of Mireya’s Arroz Con Pollo….it is delicious.

4 chicken legs with the thighs

1 small yellow onion, chopped

6 oz (1/2 jar) roasted red bell pepper, chopped

2 garlic cloves

3 cubes chicken stock

2 Tbsp tomato paste

3 packets Sazón Goya con achiote

1 tsp achiote powder

1/2 cup pimiento stuffed green olives

1 can (15 oz) gandules (green pigeon peas) Goya, drained

1/4 cup capers

2 cups long grain rice

salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste.

9 Tbsp oil

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped (optional)

1/4 cup green onion, chopped (optional)

Wash chicken very well and trim excess fat.

In a pan add 3 Tbsp oil, let oil heat a bit and add chicken. Cook it until  a little brown and add 3 cubes chicken stock and  cups hot water, or enough to cover the chicken. Mix well, allowing the cubes to dissolve. Test the salt, if necessary add some more. Cover the pan and let cook until chicken is soft.

Remove chicken from the pan, but save the stock (you might like to skim off the scum and fat from the stock). Remove skim off the chicken, and shred the meat in medium chunks. Save it.

In a pan, add 3 Tbsp oil and let it heat a little. Add onions, 1/2 tsp achiote powder, and garlic cloves. Cook until you feel a good aroma from the garlic (a minute or so). Add tomato paste, olives, capers, red bell peppers, and gandules. Mix well and add Chicken meat, and 2 cups of its stock, and test the salt. At this point you can add pepper and garlic powder to taste. Let it cook until the stock reduce to about 1/2 of a cup. Just enough to have a very moist mixture. Make sure is not too liquid, and not too dry.

Meanwhile we make the rice adding to a pan 3 Tbsp oil and let it heat a little. Add rice, about 1 tsp garlic powder and 1 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp achiote powder. Mix well and add 2 1/2 cups of hot water (if still have stock left over add it and water until complete 2 1/2 cups of liquid). Mix well, test if need more salt, reduce heat to number 3, or low, cover the pan and let rice cook until soft (about 10 minutes).

When the rice is cooked well and soft, mix it with the chicken mixture, add some cilantro and green onions, if you like, and serve.


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