I made this recipe for smokey chicken using smoked paprika for the flavouring. I think this is a spice you either love or hate. The smokiness is very pungent but it can always be found in my spice drawer. I also have sweet smoked paprika to use for goulash. And then ordinary paprika to use for roast chicken.
I did a post on poached crayfish, and straight away someone wanted to know if I was handcuffed and waiting in shackles, after having poached the crays! The crays of course were legally caught, and poached in stock! So, I hope he is not going to wonder if I smoked the chicken! Seems titles can be confusing sometimes but this is what I originally called the dish when I made it in April. The smokiness comes from the smoked paprika I used. This spice does not get used that often in my kitchen but every now and then it makes an appearance when I feel like a Spanish twist to my meals. Hopefully my new friend Chica Andaluza does not think I am being too hopeful by imagining that a little bit of paprika can transport me to Spain!
- 15 mls olive oil
- 4 chicken pieces
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
- 140 g button mushrooms, quartered
- 160 g whole baby plum tomatoes
- 250 mls dry white wine
- 5 mls dried marjoram
- 5 mls turmeric
- 2.5 mls smoked paprika
- 250 mls frozen peas
- 5 mls arrowroot
- heat the olive oil in a pot or tagine
- season and brown the chicken pieces
- remove and set aside while you cook the mushrooms
- add the tomatoes and the wine
- when the wine has come to the boil adjust the seasoning and add back the chicken
- add the herbs and spices
- cover and simmer for 40 minutes
- remove the lid and add the peas
- using 2 tablespoons of the gravy, mix in the arrowroot
- add back to the pot and allow the sauce to thicken
Ingredients for my smokey chicken:
- Olive oil – I use extra virgin cold pressed olive oil in my recipes. Be sure to store your olive oil in a dark container in a cupboard. Exposure to light could make it go rancid.
- Chicken – I only buy free range chickens as I don’t want any added hormones or brine in my chicken. And I want to eat animals that have been treated humanely.
- Mushrooms – make sure that the mushrooms are firm and not slimy. Do not wash your mushrooms as they absorb too much water. Rather brush them with a mushroom brush, or some paper towel, to clean them. Make sure you cook mushrooms completely when serving to young children or the elderly.
- Tomatoes – there is nothing wrong with using tinned tomatoes but you need to ensure the quality is good. Don’t buy chopped tinned tomatoes as they are easy enough to chop up in the tin when the recipe calls for it. Use fresh tomatoes when in season, making sure they are firm with green seeds to get the best out of them. Or extremely ripe when you are making sauces and soups.
- Wine – use only wine that you will drink! I prefer to cook with dry white wines and robust reds and when cooking lamb, rosé is perfect.
- Marjoram – this is not a dried herb commonly found in most kitchens, but I am sure you will have dried oregano. As they are very similar, you can substitute one for the other.
- Turmeric – I always have this natural food dye in my pantry as many Cape Malay recipes call for it. If it is available fresh do buy some to try, but wear gloves as it will stain your fingers!
- Paprika – I keep sweet, smoked and plain paprika in my spice cupboard as I make use of all three.
- Peas – I always have frozen peas in my freezer. They are picked when at prime sweetness, and quick frozen. I prefer the petit pois to the larger ones.
- Arrowroot – this is a great thickening agent if you don’t want your food to have an after taste of flour.