Greek Chicken

1 chicken (about 3 1/2 lbs)
approx. 1 quart water
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon rosemary
1 teaspoon sweet basil
2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Rice: (note that the proportions on this section make
1/4 cup onions (just use a whole smallish onion)
3 tablespoons olive oil (use more if necessary)
2 cup brown rice (with wild rice mixed in)
5 cups strained stock from pot of chicken

1/2 cup bag of slivered or thinly sliced almonds
3 tablespoons oil
1 cup raisins
1 green pepper (sliced into slivers or rings)

This recipe takes a long time to cook (luckily most of that is hands-off cooking time) so don't do this one on a day when you're in a hurry. Boiling the chicken takes a long time and then has to cool (unless you like getting burned) before you can finish preparing it. The chicken can be prepared ahead of time though, which cuts the work on the day the meal is served considerably.

Prepare ahead:
(variation: optionally you can cut up chicken into 8 pieces before cooking). Put whole chicken, garlic, herbs, salt and pepper into pot. Fill pot with enough water to submerge chicken (variation: substitute 1 quart chicken stock for water). Simmer until chicken is tender (about an hour). Take chicken out and set aside to cool. Before emptying the pan, SAVE ENOUGH OF THE (strained) STOCK from the pot for rest of recipe before cleaning up. Once chicken is cooled, it can be either stored whole to be prepared later, or immediately de-boned and cut into the chunks for later.

Same day preparation:
Prepare rice: Saute minced onions in oil until tender. Add raw brown rice and stock Add strained stock, stir and cover tightly. Simmer over medium heat until stock is absorbed and rice is tender (about 35-40 minutes). LEAVE LID ON and sealed while this cooks--don't be tempted to stir or peek to see how its doing.

Remove chicken from bones and cut into small chunks. Set aside until rice is done cooking.

Prepare the garnish: Saute almonds lightly in oil until golden. life out with slotted spoon. Then saute raisins in same pan until puffy adding more oil if necessary. Lift out with slotted spoon.

Chop green pepper into thin slices or rings.

When rice is done cooking, toss the chicken, almonds, and raisins into the rice in a serving bowl. Garnish with the green peppers. (Variation: for a more decorative presentation the almonds and raisins may be arranged on top with the peppers rather than stirred in).

Serves 6-8. This dish reheats quite well if you have leftovers.

Suggested side dish: Greek Salad

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