Thirty-Minute Spanish Chicken Stew

Sometimes you need to make something tasty and hearty in a rush. This dish is packed with flavour with the added smoky chorizo sausage (chorizo is either mild or spicy so if you don’t like spicy food choose the mild one). This is very simple and quick to make as a family supper. So quick in fact, I even manage to make and cook it in the morning before the kids go to school, let it meld all day, then eat it for supper. If your guests are fussy about the lovely flavourful chicken skin, crisp it up when you are browning the chicken, remove and chop it up into really small pieces before adding back in the stew.

It’s a classic recipe that can be adapted with many variations. I sometimes make it with chickpeas, or I add peppers or use chopped tomatoes. A splash of white wine is always a bonus. Why not throw in some olives at the end? Finish it off with fresh coriander or parsley, maybe a little lemon zest, some slivered almonds?

Serves 4

3 large (700g)  chicken breasts, cut into generous pieces (can use legs or thighs)

2 tblsps            sunflower oil

2                      medium onion, sliced

4                      garlic cloves, finely chopped

100g                chorizo sausage, skinned and sliced

1tsp                 dried fragrant oregano

1/2tsp              thyme

1/2tsp              smoked paprika (hot or sweet depending on your taste)

500ml               chicken stock

1 tin                 butter beans or chickpeas, drained and rinsed (400g tin 240g drained)

1/2tsp              salt (or more to taste) ground black pepper

Finish with a handful of chopped flat-leaf parsley or coriander

Method

To begin chop the vegetables and chorizo.

Heat the oil in a large skillet then add chicken pieces to the hot oil in a single layer without crowding. Sauté for about 8 minutes or until chicken is browned then remove with tongs to a side dish.

Take a heavy bottomed pot and place it over a medium heat. Add the oil and wait for 2 minutes. Now add the onion, garlic and dried herbs and sauté, stirring all the time.

After about 3 minutes the onion will have started to soften.  Now you can add the chorizo, and cook, stirring occasionally for a further 7 minutes. You will soon see the golden oils coming out of the sausage infusing the vegetables with flavour. Stir every once in a while to stop anything sticking to the bottom of the pan.

Twenty minutes have now gone by so add the chicken stock, drained butterbeans and the chicken pieces. Add salt and bring back to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes longer.

The whole thing takes about 25-30minutes; depending how quickly you can peel and chop onions. If you have more time you can leave the stew overnight for the flavours to really meld together and re-heat it the next day but be careful not to overcook it or the chicken will shred and the stew will go gloopy. Serve with rice or couscous and a green salad.

Chorizo curing in the rafters of a round house in the mountains of Galicia

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