Spanish Chicken and rice and choosing the right pan!
Spanish cooking is bold and flavorsome and this chicken dish is no exception and ticks all those boxes. Spanish cooking also evokes in me a sense of togetherness and loud family conversations! Exactly what this dish does!
Spanish food is jam packed with bold flavors. Big flavors such as paprika, peppers, chili and also the warm spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, cayenne pepper, cloves and the very exotic saffron! Even the usage of herbs in the Spanish kitchen speaks of boldness and mint, basil, rosemary and thyme are used in most dishes!
Spain is definitely on my bucket list, but Spanish food features quite often even here in Nina’s Kitchen. Patatas bravas is a huge favorite of ours. I make it truly South African by adding Boerewors, but this warm aromatic dish still has lots of Spanish flavors. Even when it comes to dessert, Spain gets my family’s vote when I make Churros with hot, dark chocolate sauce!
Anyway, before I get to today’s recipe, I feel it is important that we speak about the perfect pan. No so long ago, I spoke about the Perfect Paella pan, and as far as I know, the Spanish use their paella pan for just about everything. but we are not all that lucky and through the years I have acquired a few pans that are invaluable to me.
So here is a brief overview of the pans in my house:
The big family pan
– It is a stainless steel pan, with a steel handle which means it can go from the stove top to the oven. It is a huge 35cm pan and cooking for a big family is no problem. In fact I have two of those, one for eggs and one for bacon, no problem. I bought these pans at the catering section of Makro or game. I use these pan every day!
The pancake pan
– Anybody who bakes pancakes for a living will tell you, that a pan used for baking pancakes must be used for nothing else. I have 2 aluminum HART pans, thin, buckled and bent from all the traveling they have done, but they still make the finest pancakes!
The fancy ceramic pan
– The show off pan, because it can go straight from the oven to the table, as you can see in these photos. It also has a heavy base for even heat distribution, which is perfect for cooking a one-pan dish!
The cast-iron griddle pan
– The perfect pan to get the smokey char-grilled flavor in a burger, steak or even fish. A bit of a pain to clean, but I spray the pan with Spray n Cook before I use it and it makes cleaning a lot easier.
The non-stick pan
– Honestly, I am not a fan of a non-stick pan, so in my house it is used when the children cook or fry something! It definitely has its used, but I like to heat a pan really high for meat and fish and a non-stick pan does not like high heat!
So, there you have it, my pan selection!
Spanish Chicken and Rice
serves 4 – 6 people
8 chicken pieces – I use drumsticks an thighs
15 ml dry oregano
30 ml smoked paprika
5 ml cinnamon
45 ml olive oil
salt and pepper
1 large onion – finely chopped
2 cloves garlic – finely chopped
250 ml rice
625 ml chicken stock
1 tin chopped tomatoes
3 peppers – one of each color
broccoli and baby corn – optional
Preheat oven to 180 C. Heat the oil in a big 35 cm pan on the stove. Saute the onion and spices until the onion is soft. Add the chicken pieces and brown them on both sides. Place the chicken pieces evenly in the pan, skin side to the top. Pour the dry rice in between the chicken and pour the stock over it, followed by the tomatoes. Place in the oven and cook for at least 40 minutes. at the same time, place all three peppers(whole) on a baking sheet and roast until they are charred and soft. Place the peppers in a plastic bag and allow to sweat for 10 minutes. Remove peppers from the bag and careful remove the charred skin. Cut the flesh in strips and arrange on the chicken dish when it comes from the oven. Season with salt and pepper and place the steamed vegetables on the top. Serve with slices of lemon.
Tomorrow morning just after the 9 o’clock news, I will be back in my seat at RSG studios, sharing this easy recipe with you! Get ready to be amazed! I will also in weeks to come take you into the kitchens of other bloggers, chefs and interesting South Africans this year. So buckle up, it is going to be an awesome ride. Tune in 100-104FM or listen online here!