Thursday, July 15, 2010

Latin Baked Chicken with Spanish Rice

First of all, let me just say that food photos in magazines are sort of unrealistic. Below, I have posted a photo of last night's dinner, from Cooking Light Magazine (yes, I took a picture of the photo in the mag). Well, my dinner didn't exactly look like that, since it seems that the chefs at cooking light used about 4 times the amount of marinade called for in the recipe. Anyway, my meal may not have looked the same (or nearly as pretty), but it tasted really delicious (tooting my own horn). As I was making this dish, I was fairly certain I would not like it at all. The combination of flavors, along with the process of re-using the marinade, didn't not bode well for the recipe. Well, lo and behold, it was the juiciest, most well cooked, flavorful chicken I've made. Often, when baking chicken, it comes out bland, rubbery, and dry. This was much different, though I'm not exactly sure why. The recipe said to serve with Spanish rice, so I pulled a recipe together, and I must say, it was very flavorful and a perfect blend of spices. Kevin found that the chicken and rice together were way too spicy. Maya agreed and wouldn't eat it (she's 2, so no surprise there), but I love spicy food, and thought it was a good, medium high level of spice. Next time, I might cut down a little on the chipotle peppers, just to make it more bearable for my family. This time, I didn't have quite enough lime juice for the marinade, so maybe if I have more next time, the spice level will balance a little more.

This was the way it was supposed to look.

I didn't use chicken thighs, but breasts instead, so maybe that was why it looked a tad different.

The finished product.

I think I could eat this rice for dinner every night. See the recipe below.

Spanish Rice

* 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
* 1 cup uncooked brown rice
* 1 onion, chopped (vidalia)
* 1 green or red bell pepper, chopped
* 2 cups water
* 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes and green chiles (Rotel)
* 2 teaspoons chili powder, or to taste
* 1 teaspoon salt


1. Heat oil in a deep skillet over medium heat. Saute rice, onion, and bell pepper until rice is browned and onions are tender.
2. Stir in water and tomatoes. Season with chili powder and salt. Cover, and simmer for 45-50 minutes, or until rice is cooked and liquid is absorbed.

The Critique

AMAZING flavor. Filled my mouth with succulent happiness and a swift firm kick. It was spicy but it didn't really seem to be to strong unless it was eaten concurrently with the rice. The rice was great, too, but wasn't that spicy by itself either. When the two came together, however, it was like the implosion that preceded a hydrogen bomb detonation in my mouth. Or maybe it was the explosion itself. Either way, separately, they're more like M-80s.

Suggestion: Make both of these again, but not with each other. The chicken should be made with a bland rice or cous cous dish, and the rice should be served with bland chicken.

Together: 3 bowls of soup

Separately: 4 bowls of soup

1 comment:

  1. This looks so yummy I want the chicken recipe!