Pollo con Arroz de Maíz Estilo Hondureño (Honduran-Style Chicken and Split Corn Soup)
- 1 whole chicken skinless and cut in quarters
- 2 cups dried split yellow corn (maíz quebrado), found in most Latin American groceries
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- 1/2 small small green bell pepper finely chopped
- 3 Roma tomatoes
- 5 garlic cloves minced
- 1 celery rib chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons annatto paste (or 1 tablespoon annatto powder)
- 4-5 Culantro (recao/recaito) leaves washed and finely chopped
- 10 cups water
- green onion sliced, as garnish
This recipe is shared by Central American countries, with each country adding slightly different ingredients. In Honduras, it is traditionally made with range-free hens, although chicken is now commonly used in more urban regions of the country. The result is a thick, rich and succulent soup, very fulfilling, especially for colder weather.
- In a large pot, place chicken quarters, bay leaf, celery and ½ the onion.
- Season with salt and pepper, cover with cold water and cook for about 35 minutes, over medium heat skimming off the foam that forms on the surface with a small ladle.
- While chicken is cooking, blend or process tomatoes and green pepper. Add a little of the until well incorporated. Reserve.
- Once chicken is fully cooked, remove chicken pieces from cooking liquid to cool. Shred chicken and put aside.
- Strain cooking liquid to remove any solids and reserve. Discard solids.
- Rinse the yellow corn under cold water.
- In a heavy bottom pot, heat the oil and cook rest of the onion and garlic. Add corn and tomato mixture.
- Add the rest of the cooking liquid, making sure you add at least 8 cups of liquid. If you don’t have enough cooking liquid, add water.
- Cook over low-medium heat stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to avoid scorching.
- Cook for about 5 minutes.
- Add shredded chicken, annatto paste or powder and cook for an additional 10 minutes.
- Correct the salt and an extra pinch if needed.
- It may take longer depending on how large the corn pieces are. The smaller they are, the faster it will cook.
- Add cilantro leaves and remove from heat. Serve immediately.