Chicken and Rice
Chicken and Rice
I consider this to be the ultimate Southern comfort food. So much, in fact, that I make this for folks when they’re sick. If you can tolerate any solid food, you can eat chicken and rice. This is good to eat anytime, not just when you’re sick. The beauty of this dish is in the unpretentiousness.
Start with my standard recipe for Homemade Chicken Stock. Decide how much stock you need according to the amount of Chicken and Rice you want to wind up with. Bring stock back up to a boil. Add chicken. Taste for seasoning. Now for the rice. I use Basmati. Yep, Basmati. I know perfectly well that it’s not just ordinary long grain rice like your mama and grandmama used in their rice dishes. Mine didn’t use it either. And, yes, it’s “fururn”. It’s from India. But I think they got it right when it comes to rice. The rice is sometimes called “popcorn” rice because the natural flavor reminds you of buttered popcorn. It gives an extra layer of flavor to rice dishes that plain ol’ rice just can’t. It’s not hard to find anymore, either. You can get a 15 pound sack at Sam’s Club. Share it with your cousins. If you can’t find Basmati, or just don’t want to use it, that’s perfectly fine. You might want to add some butter to this. If you are using Basmati, I don’t think any extra butter is needed especially if you left the skin on the chicken. There’s a lot of richness in the skin.
Back to the dish….you need half as much rice as do stock. Get the stock boiling with the bite-sized chicken pieces in it. You’ve tasted for seasoning, right? Add the rice to the pot and cook uncovered until the level of the stock gets just below the top of the rice. Like this:
Sorry for the poor quality photo and the shadowing. I was cooking and taking pictures at night. Shame on me!! But, you can see the stock is below the surface of the rice. Now, cover the pot and take it off the heat. Don’t stir yet! This is the best way to let it finish absorbing the liquid without scorching the tarnation out of it. After it sits for 10 to 15 minutes, fluff it with a fork and serve.