There are so many ways to make this dish, and I've made mine more kid friendly, without too much spiciness. One or two seeded and minced serrano chiles and 1/2 cup or so of sliced Spanish olives can be added to give it more Spanish flavor.

Serves 4 to 6


  • 1 (4- to 5-pound) whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces, skin on
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium Vidalia or Spanish onion, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juices
  • 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 packet Goya Sazón Culantro y Achiote (can be found in Spanish food section or on Amazon)
  • 1 tsp. Tabasco or other hot sauce (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • Pinch of saffron
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups short-grain white rice (I like Spanish Bomba rice)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can gandules (flat Spanish green peas), drained and rinsed, or 1 cup frozen green peas
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish


    Preheat the oven to 400°.

    Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

    In a deep oven-safe or cast-iron skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook, stirring frequently, until browned on both sides, about 10 minutes total. (It doesn't have to be completely cooked as the chicken will cook more in the rice later.) Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.

    Add the onion and garlic to the skillet and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes.

    Add the tomatoes with their juices, tomato paste, packet of Culantro y Achiote, Tabasco (if using), bay leaf, cumin and saffron and simmer, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes more.

    Add the broth and wine and bring the liquids to a boil. Stir in the rice and cook for 5 minutes. Add the chicken, along with the gandules. Transfer to the oven and bake, uncovered, for about 30 minutes, until the rice is cooked and the liquids have been absorbed.

    Serve on a large plate, garnished with parsley.

    Excerpted from At Home with Natalie © 2018 by Natalie Morales with Ann Volkwein. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

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