Miguel Delgado, a psychiatrist, lives in Sayville with his fiancee.
How long have you been interested in cooking?
Since I was a kid in Puerto Rico. I used to see my grandmother cooking all the time and was always interested. My mother cooked as well. I had a lot of family members who had farms in Puerto Rico, and I liked that, too.
What are your specialties?
I cook Puerto Rican food, but also a lot of other things, a lot of pasta dishes, for friends who aren't necessarily interested in Hispanic food. I like to do flan for my kids, who like that.
Where does this recipe come from?
This comes from my grandmother and my mother. My maternal grandmother taught my mom and my mom taught me. Pretty much everyone in my family knows how to do chicken fricassee. I made a few changes over time, but have kept it pretty much the same. My grandmother used to use less cilantro. I like more. She used to use less oregano. I tend to like stronger flavors. Also she didn't use diced tomatoes, but I like them. She used to do it with potatoes, but because I always have fricassee with white rice, it was too much starch. So I started to use carrots. I like them because they add sweetness.
What are sofrito and adobo?
Sofrito is a mix of different vegetables: peppers, tomatoes, onions, garlic, recao (an herb popular in the Caribbean). It's similar to a French mirepoix. Adobo is a mix of salt, pepper, garlic powder with some other spices, depending on who makes it. I used to make it myself. Now I buy it. The same with sofrito.
Do you have any serving suggestions?
I just serve it with white rice because I find it is enough of a meal. My family used to serve it with flattened and fried plantains as well, but I don't do that. Just rice is enough.
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
2 tablespoons olive oil plus more for coating the chicken
Goya Adobo seasoning
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 medium size onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 cup Goya Sofrito
8 pitted green olives, chopped
One 8-ounce can tomato sauce
One 14-ounce can diced tomatoes with juice
One 3-ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained
1 tablespoon dried oregano
8 carrots, peeled and cut into 3 pieces each
Ground black pepper
32 ounces (4 cups) chicken stock or low-sodium canned chicken broth
4 bay leaves
Handful cilantro, chopped
1. Cut each chicken breast into 3 pieces. Brush lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with adobo.
2. In a large pot, heat vegetable oil over high. Add chicken and brown on both sides. Transfer to a plate and set aside. Discard oil from pot.
3. Lower the heat to medium; pour in the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and saute the onions until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Stir in the sofrito and olives and cook for another minute. Stir in the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, red peppers, oregano, and carrots and cook for another minute.
4. Pour in the stock, turn the heat to high, and boil for 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the chicken, bay leaves, and cilantro, cover, turn the heat back to medium, and cook for 30 minutes. Serve immediately. Makes 4 to 6 servings.