Saturday, September 28, 2013

Southwestern Skillet Chicken with Rice and Black Beans

November in Oregon is no stroll on the boardwalk. It's almost always wet and it's hard to escape the pervading damp that penetrates and chills the bones. What's different this year is the temperature. It's been cold and we are spoiled. Locals here call any spell of weather that falls below freezing an Arctic Express. It's our version of the Mistral and, I am here to tell you, it passed through the valley last week. Our temperatures, which are normally quite moderate, plunged and we even had a sprinkling of snow. Foul weather and holiday preparations interrupted my usual exercise regime and I never got out for my daily walk. I was determined to get back with the program today. I rushed through my morning chores, anticipating what I call a sun break. While we have lots of rain, it rarely rains all day and there are usually intermittent periods of sunshine.When the sun broke through I was ready and headed out the door, full of vim, vigor and enthusiasm, despite admonitions from the Silver Fox who thought it was a bad idea. I had walked about a mile when the sky turned a steely gray and dumped its core. Within seconds I was drenched and began the trek home. You know who met me at the door and, fortunately, did not say what he was thinking. He did, however, have an insufferable grin on his face. Once warmed, I sat down to think about dinner. When the children were small, this would have been a chili day. Unfortunately, my chili recipe makes enough food to feed a small country and I didn't want to deal with leftovers. That thought, however, set me to thinking about other recipes that fall into the category I call "good grub." They're completely lacking in refinement but absolutely delicious and perfect for family and very good friends. I settled on this recipe because it's easy to do and I guarantee delicious. It's very loosely based on a recipe that appeared in Cook's Country magazine. It, sans chicken, would also be a great meal for Meatless Monday. I hope you'll give it a try. Here's the recipe.

Southwestern Skillet Chicken with Rice and Black Beans...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite, inspired by Cook's Country magazine


8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 + 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided use

1/2 teaspoon pepper

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 cup chopped onion

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

4 teaspoons minced garlic

1-1/2 cups long grain white rice

4 cups low-sodium chicken broth

4 ounces Colby or Monterey Jack cheese , shredded (1 cup)

1 (15.5-oz.) can of black beans, drained, and rinsed with water

1 (10 to 12-oz.) package of frozen corn, thawed and patted dry

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Optional: Salsa for serving


1) In a plastic bag, combine flour with 2 teaspoons salt and pepper. Add chicken and toss to coat. Shake off excess flour and set aside.

2) Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add chicken, skin-side down, and cook until golden, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to a plate.

3) Add onion, red pepper flakes, and 1/2 teaspoon salt to skillet and place over medium heat. Cook, scraping up any browned bits, until onion is softened, about 5 minutes.

4) Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Stir in the rice and cook until edges turn translucent, about 3 minutes. Stir in broth and bring to a simmer.

5) Cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook for about 15 minutes. Place chicken on top of rice in skillet and cook, covered, for another 10 minutes.

6) Transfer chicken to a serving platter. Stir in black beans, corn, cheese, and cilantro. Let cheese melt for 1 minute. Season rice mixture with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with salsa. Yield: 4 servings.

You might also enjoy these recipes:

White Turkey Chili - Inspired to Cook

Navajo Tacos - Kitchen Gypsies

Southwestern Steak and Grits - The Shoe Box Kitchen

Baked Shrimp with Tomatillos - Simply Recipes

Sizzling Southwestern Flank Steak with Creamy Salsa Verde - One Perfect Bite

Southwestern Chicken Tacos - The Corn Bread Kitchen

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