Arroz Con Pollo
- 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
- Generous pinch saffron
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- One 3-pound chicken, cut into 10 pieces
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 large green bell pepper, chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 cup dry sherry wine
- 1 cup frozen baby peas, thawed
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup chopped roasted red bell peppers, plus 1 whole roasted red bell pepper, cut into strips, for garnish
- 1/4 cup sour orange juice or juice of 1/2 orange and 1/2 lime
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 cups medium-grain rice
2. Heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pan over medium-high heat. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper. Starting with the dark meat, cook until very golden brown on both sides, about 5 minutes per side for the dark meat and 4 minutes per side for the white meat. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
3. Reduce the heat to medium; add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil, the onions and bell peppers and cook, stirring constantly, until the vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes. Add the cumin, oregano and garlic and continue cooking for an additional 2 minutes. Add the sherry and cook until reduced by half, about 5 minutes.
4. Add the reserved chicken stock, 3/4 cup of the peas, the tomato sauce, chopped roasted red peppers, sour orange juice and bay leaves. Add the rice and stir to combine. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Bring to a simmer and then place the chicken back in the pan, starting with the thighs on the bottom. Bring to a simmer again, reduce the heat to low, cover and continue cooking until all of the liquid is absorbed but the rice is still moist, 30 to 35 minutes. Add additional salt and pepper to taste.
5. Add water and salt to a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook the remaining 1/4 cup peas until done, about 1 minute. Drain and rinse in cool water to stop the cooking.