Arroz con Pollo Verde
Peruvian arroz con pollo stands apart from other versions of chicken and rice across Latin America thanks to the addition of a bright green cilantro purée and aji amarillo, a fruity yellow hot pepper that’s similar in flavor to habaneros or scotch bonnets. Traditionally, the dish contains choclo, very large and chewy Peruvian corn kernels with earthy flavor. Cooked canned hominy makes a great substitute that offers a similar taste and texture. This one-pot homestyle dish is commonly served with salsa criolla, a tangy and spicy red onion relish, but a Louisiana-style hot sauce is a good alternative.
- Serves: 4 persons
- 2cups cilantro leaves and tender stems
- 3tablespoons neutral oil, such as safflower or canola oil
- 2pounds skinless boneless chicken thighs, each thigh halved lengthwise
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- 1cup finely chopped yellow onion
- 3garlic cloves, minced
- 1teaspoon ground cumin
- 2cups basmati rice
- 1(15-ounce) can hominy, rinsed and drained
- 3cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 2tablespoons jarred aji amarillo paste
- 1large red bell pepper, cored, seeded and thinly sliced
- ½cup thawed frozen peas
- Salsa criolla or hot sauce, for serving
Step 1In a blender, combine cilantro and 6 tablespoons of water, and purée until smooth. Set aside.
Step 2In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium. Add half the chicken, season with salt and pepper, and cook, turning halfway, until browned, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate, and repeat with remaining chicken.
Step 3Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil and the onion to the empty pot, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 2 minutes. Stir in garlic and cumin until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add rice and hominy, season with salt and pepper, and stir until well combined, 30 seconds. Add broth, aji amarillo paste, bell pepper and reserved cilantro purée, scraping the bottom of the pot to remove any browned bits.
Step 4Nestle the chicken with any accumulated juices into the pot, and bring to a boil over high. Cover, reduce heat to low and cook until rice is tender and all of the liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes.
Step 5Sprinkle with peas, then cover and steam for 3 minutes. Turn off heat, and fluff rice with a fork. Divide arroz con pollo in bowls and serve with salsa criolla or hot sauce.