Few dishes embody tradition quite like a hearty Cuban Arroz con Pollo, which directly translates to “chicken with rice”, but is so much more than that! This is one of those foods that often stands out as a “abuela’s favorite,” and each household has their own twist to the recipe.
Arroz con Pollo traces its lineage back to the Spanish colonization of Latin America, which brought rice to the region. As a result, many Latin countries have their own version of Arroz con Pollo. The Cuban way of preparing it has a lot of seasonings and ingredients, but it isn’t spicy.
Arroz con Pollo can turn any meal into a special occasion!
Mix ½ cup olive oil, 1 tablespoon. red wine vinegar, ½ cup water, 1 garlic clove, 1 tablespoon. Sazón, and a pinch of salt, pepper, cumin and oregano.
Marinate chicken overnight if possible, otherwise at least for one hour.
Arroz con Pollo:
Brown chicken in ¼ cup of olive oil over medium heat for about 15 minutes and reserve.
In the same oil over medium heat, sauté onion, bell pepper, and garlic until onions become translucent. Add tomato and capers at this time and continue cooking for about 5 additional minutes.
Mix in bay leaves, and tomato sauce. Also add in 2 tablespoons of Sazón, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, ½ teaspoon of pepper, 1½ teaspoons of cumin, and 1½ teaspoons of oregano.
Add chicken broth and ¼ cup of beer into pot. Stir in the uncooked rice.
Bring this all to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Cover for 25 minutes.
Uncover pot and mix well. Add the frozen peas.
Cover and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Uncover and taste rice to make sure that it is tender. If not, mix and cover.
Once rice is cooked, garnish with chopped cilantro and roasted red peppers.
TIP: At this point, remove the chicken from the bone and cut it up to make it easier to eat (or leave on the bone if you prefer).