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Arroz con Pollo –A Traditional Caribbean Dish!

10 Jan

Arroz con Pollo Recipe

Food critic night at the Aguasvivas/Pagan household! Recipe of choice: Arroz con Pollo (chicken with rice).

As Al and I stared at the recipe we knew this would be a big night! We had all our friends coming over. It was turning out to be our first official dinner party! Guests of honor: Patty, Hubby, Laura, Amable, and Ilsa.

Ilsa, Amable’s sister whom we had never met. Yes, never met! Talk about pressure! She owed us nothing; she would be the voice of truth. I’m sure I shouldn’t say this but all I could think was, “It’s just not fair!”

We had no time for contemplating we had to get to cooking! So as always, I went into the kitchen and Al went right into the living room. So much for cooking together!

Olive oil went into the pan and chicken followed right behind it. Skin side down, of course! I watched it sear for about 3 to 5 minutes. Just like the recipe called for. After all I wasn’t trying to divert from the recipe. Definitely not this one! I wouldn’t risk it! So, I kept going. Add garlic, onion and bell pepper. Add tomato sauce, sazón, bay leaf, and vino seco.

As I went through the recipe I finally reached the turning point. “Transfer the entire pot, lid and all to the oven.” This was it, the do or die moment. There was no turning back! 40 minutes from now I would know if it was tasty, not soupy (Cuban arroz con pollo is made soupy—not my cup of tea) and worth eating!

As I waited, I decided to make what the recipe called for as a side dish: Tostones (fried plantains). Yummy! Extremely easy to make! (No need to worry Hubby, I will let them know.)

Okay so here it goes: I didn’t refry the plantains after flattening them. Yes, I didn’t! What can I say I didn’t realize the recipe continued on the next page and I had four glasses of wine for god sakes! Maybe that’s not an excuse, but it’s the truth. Sooorrrrryyyyy!

Before I knew it, the moment of truth was upon us. As I began serving, there it was, right in front of me. My first arroz con pollo looking sort of soupy. Not completely soupy but definitely not completely dry! This did not look good! But if I was going to do this the way I set out to, then I would have to serve it and wait for the verdict!

“Here goes nothing,” I told myself! Six servings later and the first bites were well on their way. Minutes which felt like hours went by and then the unthinkable happened… it was a hit! A real hit!!! I couldn’t believe it, everyone loved it. Seconds were even served! It was amazing! Oh yea, and our one and only voice of truth had two plates!

Whoohoooo! The pressure was over and I was smelling success! But…

Shhhhh! Let’s consider this a side note: It wasn’t my cup of tea. Too soupy for my taste! I won’t tell if you don’t!

Note to self: Use less chicken stock next time than the recipe calls for.

So from our kitchen to yours, let the cooking escapades continue!

Until next time! See you on Day 5!

*Directions/Ingredients can be found under recipes

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