Cuban Rice Salad (Ensalada de Arroz)

Part 2 of my Cuban salad series. Fantastic hearty salad with chicken and rice! Great for outdoor parties or picnics.  I omitted the toasted sesame seeds, for personal taste.  Adapted from Cuba, the cookbook. Recipe invented by Vivian Costa Leal, a Cuban housewife.

 

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 2 large green peppers
  • 1 large white onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 cup finely cooked chicken
  •  3 cloves garlic, minced
  • salt to taste
  • 2 cups cooked rice
  • 1/2 cup grated carrots
  • 1/2 cup or more mayonnaise

 

Directions

  1. Roast the peppers over an open flame or broiler. Place in a bowl fuller ice water. Peel off the skin, and cut into strips. Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl combine the onions and vinegar. Let marinate for 30 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  3.  In a medium fry pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the chicken and garlic. Sauté for a few minutes till the garlic is fragrant. Stir in salt. Set aside.
  4.   In  a large bowl combine half the peppers and the rest of the ingredients. Salt to taste. Use the remaining peppers to decorate the top. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

 

 

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Cuban Chicken Salad (Ensalada de Pollo)

A staple served at parties. This isn’t my great aunt’s version but close.   Adapted from Cuban Chicks Can Cook, by Ana Quincoces Rodriquez

 

Cuban Chicken Salad

  • Servings: 6 to 8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 whole roasted chicken shredded without skin
  • 4 large peeled red potatoes, cubed into 1-inch pieces and boiled till tender
  • 1 large green apple peeled and finely chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup of mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 4 hard boiled eggs, 3 finely chopped, use 1 for decoration
  •   3/4 cup peas
  • 1 cup canned asparagus tips, reserve 2 tablespoons liquid
  • 1 small can diced pimentos, reserve 2 tablespoons liquid
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste

 

Directions

  1. Combine mayonnaise, mustard, reserved pea and pimento liquid, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper.
  2. Stir in the chicken, I used my hands. Add remaining ingredients. Toss well.
  3. Add a couple of tablespoons of mayonnaise if necessary.
  4. You can decorate the top with slices of egg, any left over pimento pieces, peas or asparagus.

 

Country-Style Chicken

Part two of my recipes from Cuba, The Cookbook by Madelaine Vazquez Galvez and Imogene Tondre.  I adjusted the quantity of the oil to 1 cup instead of of 2.  You can also take the chicken out and place in the sauce instead of pouring the sauce over the chicken, that way you won’t have so much oil in the dish. Otherwise this is very delicious!

 

Country-Style Chicken

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/2 cup bitter orange juice
  • 5 medium tomatoes
  • 2 large green peppers
  • all-purpose flour for dredging
  • 1 cup vegetable oil, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 medium white onions, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup scallions, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley

 

Directions

  1. Combine the chicken, salt, and bitter orange. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cut an “x” into the skin at the blossom end of the tomatoes and submerge them in the boiling water. When you see the skin starting to peel away submerge the tomatoes in ice water to cool. When cool enough to handle peel away the skin. Halve, seed, and dice.
  3. Roast the green peppers over flame or broiler until the skin blackens, turning frequently.  Let cool and peel off the skin. Seed and cut into thin strips.
  4. In a large frying pan heat up the oil over medium high heat. Dredge the chicken in the flour and add to the oil. Fry till browned on both sides. Set aside.
  5. In a medium frying pan heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, onions and saute until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the diced tomatoes and cook for about 5 minutes.  Pour the soffit over the chicken.
  6. Add the wine and let it reduce for about 5 minutes. Add the stock, peppers, and scallions. Cover and cook till the chicken is tender, about 15 minutes. Serve over mashed potatoes and garnish with parsley.

 

 

Roasted Chicken with Fregola Salad

With temperature in the high 90’s last week, I searched for some great salads for dinner. This delicious chicken salad is adapted from The Bergdorf Goodman Cookbook. I used a rotisserie   chicken found at a local market and I used Israeli couscous instead of fregola.

 

 

Roasted Chicken with Fregola Salad

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 12 ounces of fregola or Israeli pearl couscous
  • 1 pound roasted chicken breast, shredded
  • 10 ounces grape tomatoes
  • 1 10-ounce jar roasted red peppers
  • 4 cups (packed) baby arugula
  • 1 4-ounce jar grilled artichoke hearts
  • 1/2 cup Lemon Vinaigrette, plus more for serving (recipe follows)
  • 2 teaspoons pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • salt and pepper

Lemon Vinaigrette

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup grapeseed oil, add slowly

 

Directions

In a large bowl, combine the fregola, chicken, tomatoes, red peppers, arugula, and artichokes. Toss with the vinaigrette, then top with the pine nuts.  Serve chilled or room temperature.

In a small bowl, stir together the lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of water, the mustard, and the honey, then gradually whisk in the oil until emulsified. Leftover dressing can be covered tightly and store din the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days.