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Achiote-Orange Chicken with Zucchini & Cashew Rice

Warm achiote and fresh orange chicken breasts with nutty toasted cashews and sautéed zucchini rice.

Difficulty: Easy
Time: 40-45 min
This dish is Gluten-Free
Calories: 550 Fat: 8g Carbs: 57g Protein: 19g

Achiote – also known as anatto – is used both as a mild, subtle spice and as a natural colorant (in fact, you can often thank achiote for orange-colored cheeses). Achiote brings an earthy warmth to this dish, providing balance to the light spring freshness of zucchini and citrus – perfect for patio dinner or hiding from a rainy day.

Ingredients
Achiote paste
Basmati Rice
Apple cider vinegar
Cashews
Thyme
Orange
Zucchini
Cilantro
Garlic
Chicken breasts

Cooking terms for this recipe

Zest The peel of, or grating of a citrus peel for flavor.
Simmer To stew gently below or just at boiling point.
Sauté “To jump”. To fry in a small amount of fat at high heat.

What you need

Medium pot with lid

Medium sauté pan

Small bowl

Cooking Instructions

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Step 1: MISE EN PLACE

Read though the entire recipe before getting started. Wash and dry all produce. Remove thyme leaves from stem and discard stems. Remove top and bottom from zucchini and discard; then cut into quarters lengthwise, and then thinly slice. Zest orange; cut in half. Juice half, and thinly slice the other half. Mince or grate garlic. Tear cilantro leaves and stems. Remove chicken breasts from package; rinse and pat dry.

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Step 2: COOK RICE

Place basmati rice, 1¼ cups water and a pinch of salt and pepper in medium pot over medium heat. Bring to boil; cover and reduce heat to low. Cook 15-20 min until tender. Fluff with fork. While rice is cooking, begin chicken (Step #3).

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Step 3: PREP & COOK CHICKEN

Place 1 Tbsp. orange juice, 1 tsp. orange zest, 2 Tbsp. water, achiote paste, apple cider vinegar, garlic, thyme and a pinch of salt and pepper in a small bowl. Mix until incorporated. In a separate small bowl, combine 1 Tbsp. oil, 1 Tbsp. achiote mix and a pinch of salt and pepper to chicken breasts and toss to incorporate. Heat 1 tsp. oil in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. When hot, add chicken breasts to pan and sear for 3-4 min per side until golden brown and fully cooked. Remove chicken from pan.

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Step 4: FINISH CHICKEN

Add remaining achiote mix, ½ cup water and orange slices to pan and simmer for 10-12 min until sauce has reduced to half. Return chicken to pan, and mix to combine ingredients and coat well in sauce; simmer an additional 2-3 min. The USDA recommends cooking chicken to an internal temperature 165ºF.

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Step 5: FINISH RICE

Remove rice from pot and set aside. Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in previously used rice pot over medium heat. Add cashews and toast 3-5 min until golden brown and nutty. Add zucchini and sauté 3-5 min until lightly softened. Return rice to pot and toss to incorporate.

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Step 6: PLATE YOUR DISH

Divide zucchini rice between two plates, top each plate with a chicken breast and plenty of achiote sauce from the pan. Enjoy!