Everyone in Latin America makes arroz con pollo, and all claim it as an authentic regional dish. The rice soaks up every last bit of flavor from the chicken and tomatoes as it stews. Its garlicky aroma is a delicious greeting when you walk into the kitchen.
You can add other vegetables for more flavor, such as peas, chopped carrots, celery, corn - whatever you like. Add them after you have added the pureed tomatoes. Every family has its secret key ingredient, so once you master this recipe, be creative.
Authentic Arroz con Pollo Recipe
- 2 tablespoons corn oil
- 1 chicken (3 to 4 pounds), cut into pieces
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 pound ripe tomatoes, seeded and chopped
- 3 cups Basic Soup Stock - chicken or water
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups white rice
- Salt and pepper to taste
How to Make Traditional Chicken with Rice
Heat the oil in a 6-quart Dutch oven or skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken pieces and brown evenly, turning pieces as necessary, for about 25 minutes.
Combine the garlic, tomatoes, and stock in the container of a blender and puree until smooth. Set aside.
Remove the chicken from the pan and place in another dish. Drain excess fat from the pan, leaving 2 or 3 tablespoons. Return the pan to medium heat. Add the onion and rice, and saute until the onion is translucent and the rice is opaque, about 10 minutes. Add the tomato puree carefully, as the mixture will steam and sizzle. Return the chicken pieces to the pan. Add salt and pepper. When the liquid begins to simmer, cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and simmer over medium-low heat for 25 minutes.