A lot of countries have their rice-and-something recipes. Of course, everyone knows the Spanish paella which is rice, a variety of seafood, and mixed meats. The Jamaicans have their simple rice and peas (which is actually beans) and we Filipinos have the Filipinized version of the Arroz Valenciana and the bringhe, both of which have chicken among other things. It usually has a long list of ingredients and is reserved for special occasions.
This is a very simple dish of rice with chicken. There are only a few ingredients, although choice ones. I used ordinary Milagrosa rice but you can also use whatever rice you normally use, such as Thai jasmine or long grain. The rice absorbs all the flavours of the ingredients resulting in a very delicious dish that nobody would guess was so easy to make. Well, even if someone does, we don't really need to admit, do we?
6-8 chicken thighs
6 pieces of small or 3 medium chorizo (about 100gms.), sliced
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 medium onion, sliced
1/4 cup of sundried tomatoes, sliced (I used the ones in oil; dried ones may be used)
12 pimiento stuffed olives
2 c. uncooked rice (I used Thai Jasmine rice)
2 1/2 c. chicken stock or water
1/4 c. dry sherry
2 1/2 tsps. salt
1 tbsp. paprika
2 tsps. sugar
ground black pepper to taste
2 tbsps. olive oil
Pre-heat the oven to 300° F/150° C.
Season the chicken thighs with the salt.
Heat up a paella pan or ordinary frying pan and drizzle the 2 tbsps. of olive oil. Fry the chicken thighs on medium high heat until browned.
Add the chorizo slices and stir fry until the oil turns red. Add the garlic, onions and sun dried tomatoes and fry until the onions are translucent. Add the rest of the ingredients (including the browned chicken), stir very well and bring to a boil. Simmer for two minutes. Check the seasoning.
The dish can continue to cook in the paella pan or if a frying pan was used, may be transferred to an oven proof dish. Arrange the chicken on top of the rice, scraping off the grains of rice from the surface of the chicken and cover with foil. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, stirring the rice after at half time (move the chicken aside before stirring, and arrange them on top of the rice again) and re-cover with foil. When its done, take out of the oven, keeping the foil lid on, and let rest for 10 minutes. It is then ready to enjoy.
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