Saturday, July 18, 2009

Leftover Maven: Puerto Rican-spiced Chicken and Rice Casserole

Since my sister's husband is a pastor and they founded their own church, my sister and her family are surrounded by a wonderful and caring group of people. The church members have really helped my sister during her recovery, bringing food for dinner every day.

Josie, a warm and friendly woman who is in charge of hospitality at the church, dropped off a vat of Puerto Rican rice and pigeon peas, and Puerto Rican chicken fricassee.

I took some of the leftover chicken and rice, and along with leftover chicken broth, corn, salsa, scallions, and grated cheese in the fridge, made a chicken and rice casserole. The casserole was bound together by a hybrid bechamel-veloute sauce, which was made from milk and chicken broth and thickened with a roux.

It was terrific, creamy from the sauce, a little crunchy from the broiled cheese topping, and a little spicy from the well-seasoned rice and chicken.

This recipe from was my inspiration. The technique (leftover meat, rice, and veggies, brought together with a sauce, baked) can be used with any leftover meat and rice, and can take on different flavors, from Mexican, Puerto Rican, to Hungarian paprikash, to even Indian curry. You get the idea.


Nina's Recipes said...

Ninette, this is "Bold and Beautiful"
well done! Congrats!

zurin said...

what a good idea! left overs are always a one wants to eat them so this looks like a good way to reinvent them ..thanks:)

stephchows said...

what a wonderful community helping your sister out! I love hearing stories like that. and your dish looks delicious!

Marta said...

This is a great use for leftover chicken for sure! Looks delicious and satisfying. Very comforting, I'm sure dishes like these keep your sister feeling strong and fuzzy inside :)

Ellie said...

This is a great recipe for left overs. Thanks for sharing!