Chicken With Rice, the Easy Way Print Email

3 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium onions, about 8 ounces, peeled and sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 chicken, cut up into serving pieces
1 1/2 cups white rice
Pinch saffron, optional
Freshly minced parsley or cilantro for garnish
Lemon or lime wedges

Set 3 cups of water to boil. Place olive oil in a large skillet that can be covered, and turn heat to medium-high. Add onions and a sprinkling of salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions soften and become translucent, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove skin from chicken.

Add rice to onions; stir until each grain glistens; sprinkle with saffron, and stir. Nestle chicken in rice, add a little more salt and pepper and pour in the boiling water. Turn heat to medium-low, and cover.

Cook 20 minutes, until all water is absorbed and chicken is cooked through. (You can keep this warm over a very low flame for another 15 minutes; it will retain its heat for 15 minutes beyond that.) Garnish and serve with lemon or lime.

You can easily vary this dish by using any stock instead of water; by substituting another grain, like pearled barley, for the rice; by sauteing or roasting the chicken separately and combining it with the rice at the last minute; by adding sausage or shellfish, like shrimp, along with the chicken, or, most excitingly, by adding strips of red pepper, pitted olives, capers, chopped tomatoes or shelled peas to the initial onion mix. Yield 4 to 6 servings, Time 30 minutes Source: The New York Times