Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Galician Chicken and Rice

This recipe is a true homestyle recipe that is filling and healthy. I found it in an older La Leche League cookbook, and the recipe had been brought over by the father of the recipe's author who came from Galicia, a province in Spain. I had never tried cooking chicken backs and necks before I made this recipe for the blog- I had to go to a country butcher just to find them. I do not know that I will use them in the future- there are a lot of small bones that come apart as it cooks, as well as a lot of fat. I do not believe most chickens today have the flavor of birds raised a generation or more before. When I made it this time, I added some seasonings and chicken bouillon, which I feel helps keep it from being too bland and flavorless. In addition, to boost the "healthiness", I used brown rice.


1 chicken, cut up (or various chicken pieces)
3 chicken backs or backs and necks (optional)
2 slices bacon, cut up
3 large onions, chopped
4-6 garlic cloves, minced
3 bay leaves
2 Tbsp dried parsley
1 1/2 tsp of oregano
couple pinches of saffron
1 tsp Adobo seasoned salt or regular salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 Tbsp capers with some juice (optional)
2 cups rice, white or brown
4 cups water
4 chicken flavor/bouillon cubes, crushed and mixed into the water
2 cups chopped or diced tomatoes
2 cups green peas

Season the chicken pieces with seasoned salt and pepper. Fry the chicken and bacon for approximately 15 minutes. Remove to a Dutch oven (preferably one that can go between the stovetop and oven; if you don't have one, you need to later put into an oven-proof pan to finish baking). Add the onions, garlic and rice into the fat and fry until onion soft and rice is turning slightly golden, stirring often. Combine seasonings, tomatoes, rice mixture and water. Simmer, covered, for 25 minutes (for white rice) or 30-45 minutes (for brown rice). Rice will be a rich, golden color. Stir in peas. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-35 minutes. Rice will be crispy at the bottom of the pot.

Serves 6-8.

Recipe adapted from one by Karen Vespignani in Whole Foods For the Whole Family La Leche League International Cookbook, 1981.

Spanish Chicken on Foodista

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