Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Chili Rice

Picture a delicious marriage of Arroz Mexicano and Chili.  That's chili rice and it is fabulous!

Chili Rice
Inspired by Brown Eyed Baker
Partially Adapted from America's Test Kitchen

2 tbsp red chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp salt, divided
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp Mexican oregano
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 lb ground chicken (or beef)
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 green bell pepper, chopped small
1 tbsp dried minced onion
1 tsp minced garlic
15 oz can tomato sauce
4 tbsp masa

1 cup diced tomatoes (fresh or canned)
1/2 white onion, chopped
3 tbsp canola oil
1 cup long grain white rice
2 cups chicken broth

16 oz can kidney beans, rinsed & drained
16 oz can pinto beans, rinsed & drained
1 cup shredded medium cheddar cheese
Chopped green onions or chives, for garnish (optional)
Sour Cream for garnish (optional)

1.  In a small bowl, stir together the chili powder, cumin, 3/4 tsp salt, paprika, oregano, and garlic powder.

2.  In a medium bowl, mix the chicken with the spices and 1 cup of the water.  This will make a soupy mixture.

3.  Add the chicken mixture to a Dutch oven set over medium heat.  Cook, stirring often, until the chicken is cooked through.

4.  Add the tomato paste and the bell pepper to the pan.  Cook until the pepper has softened.  Add the dried minced onion and the garlic.  Cook for 30 seconds.  Add the tomato sauce, masa, and 1/2 cup of water.

5.  Reduce the heat to low.  Simmer the mixture until it has thickened (almost a sloppy joe consistency).  Transfer the mixture to a bowl or plate.  Wipe out the pot.

6.  Preheat the oven to 350°.

7.  Place the diced tomatoes and the onion in the small bowl of a food processor.  Process until smooth.  Transfer the mixture to a measuring cup.  You should have 1 cup of puree (if you have any extra, you can discard it).  Set aside.

8.  Heat the oil in the Dutch oven set over medium-high heat.  Once hot, add the rice.  Cook, stirring often, until the rice turns pale golden and opaque.

9.  Stir the tomato-onion mixture, the chicken broth, 3/4 tsp salt, and the meat mixture into the rice.  Bring to a boil.  Place a lid on the pot.  Place the pot in the oven.

10.  Bake for 20 minutes.  Remove the pot from the oven.  Stir the chili-rice.  Stir the beans into the mixture.  Replace the lid.  Put the pot back in the oven.

11.  Bake for 20 minutes.  Remove the pot from the oven.  Stir.  If the rice is tender, the cooking is done.  If not, replace the lid and cook until the rice is tender (check after 10 minutes).

12.  Serve topped with cheese, sour cream, and green onions or chives.  A side of Nacho Doritos isn't an unwelcome accompaniment either!

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