Barbara’s drunken chicken

The local newspaper published a recipe for drunken chicken which I thought was all wrong and used saffron (too expensive & rare) and frozen peas (yuck!).  It also called for chicken thighs, but those are higher in fat and my husband is a white-meat kind of guy, so I switched to chicken breasts and increased the volume of chicken so the recipe serves six instead of two.  I changed a number of other ingredients and cooking time & technique to improve the quality of the final result.  And I made use of a pile of leftover mixed vegetables from dinner at one of our favorite Sanibel restaurants, Cip’s Place.  So, use this recipe.  Not the one in the newspaper.


½ cup Arborio rice

2 to  pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breast

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 cup sliced Vidalia onion, cut into strips ¼ inch wide

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 cup of your own homemade chicken stock, fat removed & no salt added
(or 1 cup of store-bought fat free, low sodium chicken broth)

1 eight ounce can no-salt-added tomato sauce

1 Tablespoon ketchup

1 cup of beer

¼ teaspoon of tumeric

½ cup drained, sliced, sweet roasted red peppers

1 cup chopped, cooked vegetables (leftovers from last night work well)

Salt & pepper to taste

optional: Tabasco sauce

Place rice in a small bowl with enough water to cover it.  Meanwhile, remove fat from chicken breasts and cut them into chicken-thigh-size chunks – probably three pieces per chicken breast, depending on size.  Heat olive oil in a 10 or 12-inch stainless steel or nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Sear chicken on all sides (2 to 3 minutes).  Lower heat to medium and add the onion and garlic.  Saute for 3 minutes.  Drain the rice and add to the skillet with the chicken stock or broth, tomato sauce, ketchup, beer, turmeric, and pimento.  Cover and simmer for 12 minutes, but remove the chicken breast chunks as they get done, placing them in a warm ceramic bowl.  Also during this 12 minutes – maybe after the first 8 minutes – remove the cover from the skillet to allow excess liquid to reduce.  Add the chopped vegetables and simmer for another couple minutes.  Salt and pepper (and maybe Tabasco) to taste.  Turn heat off.  Let vegetable-rice mixture stand for 5 or ten minutes, then add chicken chunks to it again and gently warm over very low heat for a minute or so.  Serves 6.