Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A Happy Confluence of Events

When I got home from seeing my friend Olga, Richie looked up from his Solitaire game on the laptop and said, "Oh - "T" just called; said he had to be in Torrance on business and that if we were going to be around, he'd drop in for awhile.  So I told him I was making Arroz con Pollo tonight and to come for dinner."

I knew without Richie having to say it that "T" had accepted with enthusiasm.  "T" is Chicken Crazed or Poultry Passionate, a condition that has lasted quite some time.

Richie's favorite Mexican dish is Arroz con Pollo and he'd finally found a recipe that suited him in a book called "Around the World, Around Our Town; Recipes from San Pedro."  Thus this was a double good hit for "T" - he grew up in San Pedro! 

Richie tweaked the recipe a little and these additions gave the dish a kind of warm glow on the tongue.  We all went back for seconds...and there's more leftover (but not for long.)

3/4 cup olive oil
1 package skinless, boneless chicken breasts cut into 2-in. chunks
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove of garlic, minced
1'2 cup tomato sauce - he substituted La Victoria salsa
Pinch of saffron which is optional so he left it out
1/2 teas. curry powder
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
Pepper to taste
1 cup raw rice
3/4 cup frozen peas
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
And he added a handful of pickled jalapenos, chopped

Using a Dutch oven, brown the chicken in the oil.  Add the onion and garlic and fry a few minutes more.  Add the tomato sauce/salsa, saffron if you're using it, curry powder, chicken broth and pepper.  Cover and cook for 20 minutes.

Add the rice, stir well and simmer for 15 minutes.  Add in the peas and mushrooms and cook 15 minutes longer.  Call "T" to join you and serve.

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