Chicken, Rice and Beans Make a Classic Combination

Two of the world’s great flavor combinations are classics in multiple world cultures. Chicken and rice or beans and rice recipes are bedrock creations in many cuisines and are a favorite in my household. I recently decided to make it a “trio” combination, which was a big success and sure to be a household staple for years to come.

 

While cooking your rice in lightly salted water [I use quick and easy boil-in-bag but any will do], cut your boneless chicken breast into bite size morsels or strips. I use a simple but flavorful marinade of light soy sauce, coarsely chopped garlic and pepper. Use whatever herbs and/spices you like with chicken. Tarragon is perfect with chicken and sometimes a few red pepper flakes are good if you want some heat. Place your chicken in a sealed plastic bag in the fridge and set aside your cooked rice.

 

Now it is time for the beans or other veggies you like with chicken. I usually use undrained black beans heated in a saucepan with a generous helping of Rotel [I like a little spice but diced tomatoes are fine]. In a small skillet, sautee onions, garlic and whatever other veggies you like. My favorites are broccoli [wonderful with chicken] and eggplant. Add these to your beans. Although chicken is perfect for me, you can use almost any meat – pork, beef and shrimp are good variations on this recipe but be creative with your personal favorites in meat and vegetables.

 

Remove your chicken [20 to 30 minutes marinating is fine] and place in the sautee skillet with a little oil or butter. Cook your bite size chicken about three minutes per side and you are finished. Combine all your ingredients [except the rice] and let them simmer for ten to fifteen minutes. Serve immediately on rice and you have a quick and easy dinner.

 

–Dick Funderburke