The Washington Post

Dominican Rice With Chicken

Dominican Rice With Chicken 4.000

Goran Kosanovic for The Washington Post

May 2, 2016

In this Dominican arroz con pollo dish, the chicken is cooked separately from the rice, allowing the chicken to pick up the flavor and color of its caramel sauce.

Make Ahead: The chicken needs to marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. The chicken can be covered with the sauce and reheated in a 350-degree oven just until warmed through.

Where to Buy: Culantro is a relative of cilantro with a more pronounced aroma and stiffer leaves. It's available at H Marts. Sour orange juice is available at most Latin American markets.

4 - 5

When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 4-5 servings

  • For the chicken
  • 3 pounds bone-in, skinless chicken parts, such as breasts, thighs and legs
  • 1 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sour orange juice (may substitute apple cider vinegar; see headnote)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water, or as needed, plus 3 cups water
  • 1 medium red onion, minced
  • 2 tablespoons seeded, minced red bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoons seeded, minced cubanelle pepper
  • 2 tablespoons minced cilantro
  • 2 fresh culantro leaves, chopped (see headnote)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon drained, minced capers
  • 1 tablespoon pitted, chopped green olives
  • For the rice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced red onion
  • 1 tablespoon seeded, minced red bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon seeded, minced cubanelle pepper
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup Pilsener beer, preferably Presidente brand
  • 2 stems cilantro
  • 3 fresh culantro leaves (see headnote)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 cups long-grain white rice
  • For serving
  • Sliced roasted red bell pepper
  • Small handful cooked sweet peas


For the chicken: Cut any chicken breast pieces in half so all the pieces are about the same size.

Whisk together the garlic paste, salt, pepper, sour orange juice and oregano in a large mixing bowl. Add the chicken and turn to coat thoroughly; cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Heat the canola oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Once the oil shimmers, stir in the sugar. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the mixture turns a dark amber color. Add the marinated chicken and brown on all sides for 15 minutes or so, adding a tablespoon or so of water (as necessary) to prevent scorching. Transfer the chicken to a platter.

Add the red onion, the red bell and cubanelle peppers, cilantro and culantro to the pan. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring a few times, then add the 3 cups of water, tomato paste, capers and olives, stirring to incorporate. Reduce the heat to low; cover and cook for about 30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.

Transfer the chicken and vegetables to a plate. Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the pan liquid (for the rice); discard the rest.

For the rice: Heat the olive oil in the same saute pan over medium heat. Once the oil shimmers, stir in the red onion, red and cubanelle peppers, tomato paste, garlic paste and salt; cook for about 5 minutes, then add 1 cup of the pan liquid, the water, beer, cilantro, culantro and bay leaf. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil, then add the rice. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 30 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Discard the cilantro, culantro and bay leaf.

Spoon the rice onto a wide platter. Top with the chicken and the remaining 1/2 cup of pan liquid.

Garnish with roasted red peppers and sweet peas.

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Recipe Source

From Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, resident Oneida Moscoso.

Tested by Emily Codik.

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Nutritional Facts

Ingredients are too variable for a meaningful analysis.

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