Monday, June 15, 2015

Arroz con Pollo

Puerto Rico was my home for three years, 1978 - 1981. 
One of the Puerto Rican dishes that I love is Arroz con Pollo, or Chicken with Rice. 

Arroz con Pollo is an easy, one pot main dish that has many different variations.  
My pantry style version does not use fresh peppers. Instead, I get the pepper flavor from my secret ingredient - Hunt's Manwich sauce. 

Tonight, give your family a taste of Puerto Rico on a budget!

3-4 Servings - use three leg quarters               
4-6 servings - use four leg quarters
1- 1/2 hours from start to finish

  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. dried cumin
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp. paprika
  • 3 chicken leg quarters, cut into 6 pieces
  • 3 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 ½ cup long grain rice
  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 cubes, 0r 2 tsp. chicken boullion
  • 2 ½ cups of hot water
  • ½ of a 15 oz. can Hunts Manwich sauce
optional - half a cup of frozen peas


  • Place the first five ingredients into a one gallon, zip top freezer bag.  Shake the seasoning mix until it is mixed well.

  • Using a paper towel, pat the chicken pieces to remove all moisture.
  • Place the chicken pieces into the gallon zip top bag with the seasoning mixture. Seal the bag and shake until all of the chicken pieces are evenly covered with the seasoning.
  • Heat the canola oil in a deep, twelve inch skillet until the oil is hot, but not smoking.

  • Add the chicken pieces skin side down and brown for about six minutes on each side over medium high heat.  Do not let the oil smoke or get dark.

  • Put the browned chicken on a plate.
  • Add the chopped onion to the skillet and cook until soft, stirring occasionally

While the onion is cooking

Dissolve the chicken bouillon in the hot water.
Add 1/4 tsp. garlic powder and ½ can of Hunts Manwich sauce to the chicken bouillon. Stir until blended. 
Set aside.
  • Add the uncooked rice to the skillet with the soft onion and cook for about one minute or until the rice turns golden. 

  • Carefully add the bouillon-Manwich mixture to the browned rice. Stir to make sure the rice is evenly distributed in the skillet and covered with liquid.
  •  Place the browned chicken into the skillet and pour in juices that collected on the plate into the skillet.
  • Bring the rice mixture back to a boil.
  • stir in the frozen peas
  • Turn the heat down to medium-low and cover the skillet. Cook until the chicken is done and the rice has absorbed most of the liquid. About 30-35 minutes.
Notice that the onions are on top of the golden brown rice and the tender, pull apart with your fingers, chicken. 

  • Turn the heat off and let the covered skillet stand for about ten minutes before removing the chicken and fluffing the rice with a fork.

Adapted from a recipe by Melissa d'Arabian

Watch for my next post - I will show you how to make another main dish that will use the other half cup of Hunt's Manwich sauce.