Costa Rican Arroz con Pollo is a national favorite dish. There are many versions of Arroz con Pollo, which is popular all throughout Central and Latin America. This particular recipe, Costa Rican Arroz con Pollo, happens to be my favorite.
Costa Rican Arroz con Pollo Recipe-
- 1 whole chicken, about 4 lb., chopped into 8 serving size pieces
- 3 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 2 tsp. salt, plus 1-1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. Spanish smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp. ground dried cumin
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black peppercorns
- 1/2 tsp. freshly ground turmeric root
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1 small white or yellow onion, peeled and diced fine
- 1 green sweet bell pepper, cored, seeded, and diced
- 1 red sweet bell pepper, cored, seeded, and diced
- 1-1/2 cups long-grain rice
- 4 large cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1/2 cup tomato sauce
- 1-1/2 cups chicken stock
- Place 2 tsp. of salt, the Spanish smoked paprika, garlic powder, cumin, turmeric, black pepper and cayenne in a plastic gallon bag. Shake well until the mixture is thoroughly combined.
- Wash the chicken pieces, pat them dry, and put them into the bag with the spice mixture. Shake the bag, tossing the pieces, to ensure even coating all over.
- In a high-walled, heavy duty skillet, over medium-high flame, heat the oil until almost – but not quite – smoking.
- Add the chicken pieces into the skillet and fry about 5 to 6 minutes on each side, until nicely browned all over.
- Transfer the chicken to a platter when well browned.
- Into the same skillet, add 1/2 tsp. salt, the onions, green peppers, sweet bell peppers. Reduce the flame to medium, and cook the vegetables, stirring continuously, until softened and fragrant – about 6 to 7 minutes should do it.
- Now add in the garlic and rice, and cook until the rice starts to turn a pleasant golden color and becomes fragrant. This should only take about 1 minute.
- In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the stock, tomato sauce and 1 tsp. of salt. Add in 1-1/4 cups water also, and then pour this stock mixture to the skillet. Stir well, to make sure the rice is all covered in liquid.
- Nestle the chicken pieces into the rice, and add into the skillet any juices from the platter.
- Raise the flame to high and cook until the liquid is boiling. Then reduce the heat to just a gentle simmer, and cover the skillet. Cook until the chicken is cooked well done, the rice is well tenderized, and most of the liquid is absorbed – about 30 to 35 minutes should do it.
- Cut off the heat, and allow the skillet stand, covered, for about 10 minutes.
- Serve your Costa Rican Arroz con Pollo while still nice and warm.
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