Forty minutes from start to finish and you get a culinary delight
Truly a delight to make as it is to eat; Chicken Saffron Rice raises the bar for simplicity in the kitchen. It really only takes 40 minutes to make from start to serve, 10 minutes to slice and chop, 10 minutes to sauté, and 20 minutes to slow cook. Now how tough can that be? If you're looking for a culinary richness of flavors and colors, you must treat your guests to this, and you won't be spending all evening in the kitchen! Here's what you will need:
1 large (3/4 lb) boneless chicken breast
2 sausage links (either Italian or Chorizo)
1 large green Italian pepper
1 large red bell pepper(roasted if possible)
1 medium yellow onion
1 large shallot
12 cloves of garlic, left whole
1/2 teaspoon of Spanish paprika
1/2 teaspoon of Saffron threads
1 1/2 cups of short grain rice
3 cups of chicken stock (or broth)
3 tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
That's all you need. A word about the peppers first. The Italian green peppers can be found in the produce section of your grocery store. They are a bit smaller and deeper green than regular bell peppers and they are very good with a thinner skin. They are also usually cheaper than the bells and come to about 70 cents per pepper. As far as the red pepper, if you can roast them, great. Otherwise, you can also purchase roasted red peppers in the jar, usually on sale for $2.99 to $3.49 per jar, which contain 2 to 3 peppers. Now that comes to less than fresh red bell peppers price wise. In any case, it's your choice.
OK, glad we got that out of the way. Let's start with our first 10 minutes by slicing and chopping. Start by slicing your chicken breast in 1/2 inch thickness and about 2 inch lengths, the sausage at 1/2 inch thickness, the onion roughly cut into eighths, the shallots finely chopped, and the peppers in 2 by 2 inch slices. Remember to leave the garlic cloves whole.
Now heat your oil in a deep (3 inch) skillet that's a good 10 inches in diameter, over medium high heat. Start by browning the sausage, about 3 to 4 minutes. Next, add the peppers (except the red if you bought the jar version), stirring for a couple of minutes. Next, add the chicken, shallots, and garlic, stirring for another 2 minutes. Finally, add the onions, stir for another minute or so. Bring the heat to high and add the chicken stock, paprika, and saffron threads, stir well for one minute. At this time, if you bought the roasted red peppers in a jar, you may add them now. Taste the broth and season with salt and pepper to your taste.
When broth comes to a boil, which should take less than a minute, add the rice, stir well, cover, and reduce heat to low. Simmer covered for 20 minutes. When rice is done, stir gently, remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes if you want, or just plate each portion for your guests. This recipe will make enough for 4 dinner guests. You may finish dinner with a nice tossed salad of baby spinach leaves which will compliment the entree. Enjoy and bon appétit!