Originally aired September 11, 2012
- 2 generous pinches saffron threads
- 1/3 pound thin green beans, trimmed and halved across
- 1 cup fresh spring peas
- 2 pieces bone-in, skin-on chicken breast
- 2 small onions, 1 quartered and 1 finely chopped
- 1 rib celery, coarsely chopped
- 1 carrot, coarsely chopped
- 1 large bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons EVOO Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 cup broken pieces of thin spaghetti or orzo
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups long grain white rice
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon, a generous pinch
- A small handful of golden raisins
- 1 Meyer lemon, very thinly sliced
- Toasted slivered almonds, to garnish
Bring 2 inches water to boil in skillet, Remove 1 cup boiling water, pour over saffron and reserve. Add salt to water; add beans and peas, and par-boil 3-4 minutes. Drain and reserve. Place chicken in skillet skin-side down and add quartered onion, celery, carrot and bay leaf. Cover with a couple of inches of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer to poach the chicken, about 20 minutes. Remove chicken and let cool. Strain stock into a bowl and reserve. Return skillet to the stove.
Remove chicken bones and skin. Slice or pull chicken into large bite-sized pieces.
Heat EVOO, 2 turns of the pan, in skillet over medium to medium-high heat; add butter and melt. When butter foams, add pasta and toast to golden. Add finely chopped onion, and garlic to pasta, and stir 2-3 minutes; season with salt and pepper. Add rice and stir 1 minute more. Add the wine and stir to evaporate it into rice. Add about 3 cups of reserved poaching liquid plus the saffron water, 1 quart of liquid total. Add cinnamon, raisins and lemon; stir to bring to boil, cover and reduce heat to simmer. Cook 15 minutes, add chicken and peas and beans and cook 2-3 minutes more until rice is tender and chicken is warm through. Serve from the skillet garnished with toasted almonds.