My friend Aviva gave me achiote powder and I love it. It’s a Latin American spice that is not always easy to find. I tried this recipe both ways, once with achiote and once with paprika. Both times I loved it so don’t hesitate to try it with the paprika or ancho chili powder.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups white rice
1 teaspoon achiote (annatto) powder or paprika or ancho chili powder
1 bay leaf
1-3/4 cups canned crushed tomatoes
2-1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook until the onion is soft, about 2 minutes. Add the rice, achiote powder (or paprika or ancho chili powder), saffron and bay leaf. Cook and stir until the rice is opaque, about 2 minutes, Add the tomatoes and broth, stirring to combine. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook until the liquid evaporates to just below the level of the rice, about 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to the low, cover, and cook until the rice is tender, about 20 to 25 minutes. Uncover, fluff with a fork and serve with Chocolate Chicken Mole, if desired.