Michelle Bernstein’s Arroz Con Pollo
Arroz con pollo:
6 boneless skinless chicken thighs
Marinade for chicken:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon oregano
Juice of 1 lime or 1 tablespoon lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt and black pepper
Combine all ingredients and marinate for 2-3 hours.
Heat a sauté pan over medium heat, when hot, add the chicken thighs (you don’t need any oil as the marinade has enough oil) and cook until golden on one side; flip over and shut off the heat.
Remove and place on a plate and set aside at room temperature until cooking the rice.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup tiny diced Spanish onion
1 red bell pepper, tiny diced (no seeds)
1 green bell pepper, tiny diced (no seeds)
Salt and pepper
2 cups chicken broth or stock
2 cups Valencia rice
1/3 cup dry white wine
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
1 heaping teaspoon saffron threads steeped in 2 tablespoons boiling water for 5 minutes (don’t drain)
1 tablespoon of sazon completa (available in Latin markets), optional
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro leaves
2 cups of your favorite pilsner- or pale-ale-style beer
1 cup green olives, preferably stuffed with pimientos (plus more for garnish)
1 cup frozen peas
1 teaspoon of your favorite hot sauce (I like Cholula’s)
Heat the oil in a large, deep, heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions, peppers, and cook, stirring until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the rice to the pan, stir for 1-2 minutes. Add the stock, wine, butter, saffron liquid, sazon (if using), cumin, and turmeric into the pan. Add the tomato paste, and cook, stirring to coat the other ingredients with the paste, for 3-4 minutes.
Add the garlic, parsley, cilantro, and 1 cup of the beer. Season with salt and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce to a low simmer and add the olives, peas, and hot sauce. Place the reserved chicken thighs and any juice that has collected on its dish into the rice. Cover for about 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, uncover the pan and add the remaining beer to the skillet. Don’t stir!!! Cover again, and cook until the beer is substantially absorbed by the rice and the chicken should be completely cooked through, about 10 more minutes.
Uncover the skillet and let simmer until the liquid is almost completely reduced, about 5 minutes. Garnish with some more Spanish olives and serve.