Thigh is better than breast because it's fattier so they don't dry out. This recipe would also work great with ground meat!
Long grain and medium grain rice are ideal in this because they are less "sticky" than short grain rice so it makes this come out like a creamy risotto. But it will work with short grain rice too. This will also work fine with basmati and jasmine rice, though you will get the added fragrance from these rices. I have not tried this with brown rice but it should work but it will take around 40 minutes to cook on low heat, then add the broccoli right at the end. You may need to top up with a bit of extra water.
Do not use risotto or paella rice - the liquid ratios in this recipe are not suited to these. I also have not tried this with quinoa, cauliflower rice or any non-rice alternatives!
3. Frozen Broccoli
is fine to use in this recipe, but thaw first and ensure all excess liquid is drained.
Any melting cheese is fine for this recipe.
5. Cooking chicken:
It’s great if you can get some colour on it but don’t cook it all the way through and don’t let the base of the pot go too brown (discolours the sauce).
6. LEFTOVERS/MAKE AHEAD:
This reheats much better than most rice casseroles because it's nice and saucy, just keep it in the fridge :) For make ahead, stop at the point after you stir the cheese in, cover and let it cool. Then sprinkle with cheese on top, refrigerate, then microwave to reheat / melt the cheese. I think this is the freshest way to make ahead.
7. Nutrition per serving (about 2 cups), assuming 5 servings and that this is made using low fat milk. CALORIE REDUCTION: Leave out all the cheese, stir through 1/2 cup parmesan instead then top with breadcrumbs, spray with oil. This will reduce the calories by about 100 calories per serving.