Sweet Chicken Rio & Rice

This was AMAZING! I mean it- I LOVE THIS DISH! and I’m pretty sure you will, too :) Both of these recipes can be found on Jamie Cooks It Up! You can link to her blog from the button on the right blogroll of this screen.

Since Jamie’s original recipe called for pork, I changed it slightly. Otherwise everything else was pretty much the same. Instead of using chicken breasts, however, I threw a small whole chicken into the Crockpot with about 3 1/2 cups water, and let it cook slowly over night. This yielded a ton of fall-0ff-the-bone meat and about 4 cups thick, luscious chicken stock.

After picking through the meat, which was plenty, I saved the bones, skin, and gunk to boil down for another stock. There really was enough meat for me to make another meal from had I been feeling particularly savvy. I was not. Instead I used all the meat in this recipe, which gave me a HUGE amount of sweet chicken rio. It would not go to waste I was to find out :)

I love Crock-potting whole chickens. It just makes life so easy :)

After the meat was cooked, picked through and shredded, I placed it back into the (clean) Crockpot and added the necessary ingredients. At this point it only had to crock for about 4 hours on low.

Here is the original recipe (remember you can use pork or even turkey if you want.

SWEET CHICKEN RIO

3 lb. chicken meat, cooked and shredded

1 (16 oz.) jar salsa (2 cups)

1 can green chilies

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 can black beans, undrained

1. Combine all ingredients into Crockpot and cook on low to medium heat for 4 – 5  hours.

2. Serve with warm corn tortillas, cheese, lettuce or cabbage, tomatoes, and any other condiment such as avocado, black olives, & taco sauce.

**NOTE: If starting this recipe with raw meat do as follows: In the bottom of the Crockpot mix salsa, green chilies, brown sugar, and black beans. Add the chicken and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 7 hours. Take the meat out of the Crockpot and shred it up with a fork. Return the meat and cook 1 more hour.

I am a BIG lover of corn tortillas. Seriously, I think I can eat just about any meal in a corn tortilla. Something about them just makes me happy. I’m also a big fan of Mexican/TexMex, so this meal was right up my alley.

A perfect accompaniment to this was Jamie’s Cilantro Lime Rice. It was super yummy and yielded way more than her recipe said it would (I am sure this has more to do with me and the kind of rice I used than anything else. Short grain brown rice FYI.) But it gave me plenty of leftovers for another meal.

Cilantro Lime Rice

2 cups uncooked rice

1 tbsp. butter

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 chicken bullion cubes

1 tsp. lime zest

4 cups water

2 tbsp. lime juice

1 tbsp. sugar

3 tbsp. fresh cilantro, chopped

1. In a large skillet combine rice, butter, garlic, lime zest, bullion, and water. Bring to a boil and stir well.

2. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes.

3. In a small bowl combine lime juice, sugar, and cilantro (I used dried and let it sit in the mixture for about 30 minutes). Pour over the top of hot, cooked rice, and stir to incorporate.

This rice was fantastic. The flavors are subtle yet they compliment the chicken dish so well. I was very glad I tried these recipes and they will definitely be repeated at some time. Enjoy!

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