Put the saffron in a small bowl
and pour over the warm water.
Bruise the strands with the back of
a teaspoon to fix the colour, and set
aside while you prepare the rest.
Heat the olive oil in a large,
weighty casserole, and when hot
tip in the chicken. Stir fry for a
minute or two over a high heat to
seal in the juices, then set aside.
Strip the leaves from the thyme
sprigs and scatter into the pan
along with the onions and garlic.
Fry until golden then pour in the
lime juice. Turn the heat down a
tad, add the pepper and continue
cooking for another 5 minutes
before adding the wine, stock and
seasoning. Return the chicken to
the pan and simmer for 6 minutes
until the meat is tender and the liquid
has cooked down a little.
Meanwhile, cook the rice in a pan
of fast boiling water until tender, but
with a slight bite. Drain in a colander
and rinse with warm water. Heap
over the chicken while still on the
heat. Drizzle with the saffron and
its soaking liquid, and scatter over
the peas. Don’t stir the chicken and
rice at this stage, but cover and
cook over a low-moderate heat
until the rice is fluffy and the liquid
reduced to a few tablespoons –
about 3 minutes. Before serving,
gently mix the saffron-streaked rice
with the chicken and pepper mixture.