Monday, December 8, 2008

Report from the Twit Army Mess hall - Chicken & Rice, Latin Style

2 pounds chicken thighs with skin and bone
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into bits
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, chopped (2 cups)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup medium-or long-grain white rice, I use Basmati
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
3/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon crumbled saffron threads
1 Turkish or 1/2 California bay leaf (Make sure you check, Turkish bay is much milder than California bay leaves)
1 cup frozen peas (not thawed)
Garnish: chopped flat-leaf parsley

Pat chicken dry and season with 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper (total). Heat butter and oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet (at least 2 inches deep) over medium-high heat until foam subsides, then brown chicken, turning once, about 10 minutes total. Transfer chicken with tongs to a plate.
Pour off all but 2 tablespoon fat from skillet. Cook onion and garlic with 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper over medium heat, stirring, until golden, about 6 minutes. Add rice and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add broth, water, saffron, and bay leaf and bring to a full boil. Nestle chicken in rice, keeping as much rice around (rather than under) chicken as possible, and add juices from plate. Simmer, covered tightly with lid, over low heat until chicken is cooked through, rice is tender, and most of liquid is absorbed, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in peas. Cover with a kitchen towel but keep the towel off the food and then lid and let stand until all of liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Discard bay leaf and serve.(very important, a bay leaf is actually sharp enough to perforate the intestines).

Serves 4

This is easy to make but must be served as soon as cooked, you can't keep it for the next day

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