Arroz con Pollo

In English, chicken & rice, another good cold weather meal that makes the house smell so good and is relatively easy to make. So here we go.

I started with bone in chicken thighs that I generously salted and peppered and cooked skin side down first in a heavy pot until golden brown and then took them out and set them aside on a plate for a few minutes.

salt pepper chicken browned

While the chicken was cooking, I cut up 2 medium onions, 1 of each green and yellow peppers into medium-sized pieces. Once the chicken was out of the pot, leave the fat that has collected in the bottom. Add to it the onions and peppers plus two tablespoons of each tomato paste and chopped garlic and cook for about two minutes. At this time I added 2 cups of brown rice instead of the usual white.

cut up veges

cooking veges

added rice to veges

Now for the secret ingredient, I had some saffron in the cabinet so I threw in a very health pinch of it. You don’t have to but it just gives the dish an indescribable flavor coupled with the brown rice.

Now that everything is coated and stirred around with the oil from the bottom of the pot add your 5 cups of chicken broth and bring the pot to a boil. After it boils reduce the heat to a simmer and add the chicken back to the pot and put the lid on. Now the hard part, you have to wait about 40 minutes or so until the rice cooks. For the brown rice it takes almost an hour. Taste the rice to make sure it is done. Also you will see the chicken resting on a bed of rice in the pot. By then the chicken is cooked all the way through.

chicken in pot

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Here are few shots of the juicy chicken on top of a bed of rice with all the soft and flavorful vegetables mixed in. Go pour yourself another glass of wine and dig into the goodness.

arroz con pollo 1

arroz con pollo 2

Enjoy~

Tomato Paste Trick

We all have faced this dilemma, need two teaspoons of tomato paste now what do you with the rest of the can? Here is what I do to save the rest and have it portioned for the next time.

canned tomato paste

Spread out some plastic wrap over the counter, as you can see in the picture I cut the regular sheet of plastic wrap in half, and then portion out the remaining amount of tomato paste in one teaspoon “drops” on the wrap.  As you can see in the picture, space them apart by about two inches.

portioned tomato paste

Fold the plastic wrap around the tomato paste and press the air out between each drop.  Then roll them up as in the video below:

Here is a side shot of the roll.

folded tomato paste

Place in the freezer until frozen solid.

frozen tomato paste

Now here is what to do with those one tablespoon portions:

  • Keep them in the freezer up to a year.
  • Just cut off how much you need and use in the recipe you are making.

Now that they are so handy, come up with more uses for tomato paste in your own creations.

Hope this helps you in the future.  Enjoy ~