Classic Spanish flavors – smoked paprika, garlic, chorizo, sherry, saffron – will dance on your tongue when you taste this Spanish Style Chicken and Chick Pea Stew With Grilled Bread! The stew is finished with a squeeze of lemon, and garnished with fresh parsley and rustic grilled bread with manchego…
The Italians and Spanish, the Chinese and Vietnamese see food as part of a larger, more essential and pleasurable part of daily life. Not as an experience to be collected or bragged about – or as a ritual like filling up a car – but as something else that gives pleasure, like sex or music, or a good nap in the afternoon.
~~ Anthony Bourdain
Dare I ask how you describe food? I definitely join the “Italians and Spanish, the Chinese and Vietnamese” in the way I connect food with my life and lifestyle. My best memories are almost always associated with food… either in preparing it in my own kitchen or in enjoying it in the kitchen of another.
This simple and rustic Spanish-inspired dish is resplendent with vibrant colors, a variety of textures, and healthy ingredients, yet it is quick enough to bring to your table on a busy weeknight.
I wax poetic (or is it wax ad-nauseum?) about the importance of my well-stocked pantry and my knowledge of flavor profiles in putting a quick meal together and skipping the cookbook references and shopping lists. Spanish Style Chicken and Chick Pea Stew With Grilled Bread was just such a dish. I love Spanish flavors – saffron, smoked paprika, garlic, tomatoes, parsley, sherry… Did I mention saffron? I keep these ingredients on hand ALWAYS, and I just have to grab a few fresh things.
I love to do the chick peas in my pressure-cooker, but canned are a quick and easy substitute. The chorizo is the cured Spanish type (not the soft Mexican un-cooked type). I specify chicken thighs in this recipe; I love their meatier flavor and texture. Chicken breast will work, as will shrimp. Keep in mind with shrimp that it cooks in about 3-5 minutes, and should be added just prior to serving.
A dry, crisp Spanish rosé (tempranillo) or white (albariño or torrontes) will pair beautifully with this dish. Get that bottle of wine in to chill; this dish will be ready before you know it! A focused cook (not me most nights 🙂 ) can get this done in 30-40 minutes. I prefer to engage my husband in conversation with a glass of wine while I cook, a practice I highly recommend!
Spanish Style Chicken and Chick Pea Stew With Grilled Bread
- a drizzle of olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic minced
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 2 ounces chorizo 1/4" dice see notes
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, cubed see notes
- 1 pint grape tomatoes or similar
- 1/2 cup dry sherry
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika hot or mild
- 1 1/2 cups cooked chick peas see notes
- 1 1/2 cups peas frozen are fine
- 1 cup chicken stock/broth
- a couple pinches of saffron threads see notes
- sea salt/fresh ground pepper
- 1 lemon divided use
- Italian flat leaf parsley to garnish
- 1 small baguette cut in diagonal slices
- olive oil to brush
- manchego or romano cheese
To a deep saute pan over medium-high heat, add a drizzle of olive oil. Add the garlic, onion, crushed red pepper, and chorizo. Saute until the onion is translucent.
Add the cubed chicken and grape tomatoes. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is browned and the tomatoes have begun to burst.
De-glaze with the sherry, stirring the bottom of the pan to loosen browned bits. Add the smoked paprika, and reduce liquid by about half. Meanwhile heat the broth, and add the saffron. Stir to combine well.
Preheat the grill for the bread.
When the liquid is reduced by about half, add the chicken broth/saffron mixture, the chick peas, and the peas. Season with salt and pepper. (Be sure to taste. The chorizo brings some salt to the dish). Reduce heat to a vigorous simmer. Cook until bread is ready, or about 5-10 additional minutes.
Prepare the bread by lightly brushing both sides with olive oil. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the cheese into a prep bowl - enough to sprinkle on top of each bread slice.
Grill the bread until it has nice grill marks. Turn it over. Top with a bit of the shaved cheese. Cook until the 2nd side has grill marks.
Squeeze the juice of 1/2 lemon over top. Give it all a good stir. Ladle stew into shallow bowls. Garnish with chopped parsley, a slice or two of the grilled bread, and a wedge of lemon
The deli counter at my local market is always willing to cut me off a chunk of chorizo. You can also ask for a few 1/4" thick slices, and that will save time dicing.I have found a 1 to 1 1/2" thick slice is plenty, but of course the diameter of the chorizo varies by brand. I use about 2 ounces for 4 servings.
As I mentioned in the post, chicken breast is fine in place of thigh meat. Also, shrimp is delicious, but add it in 5 minutes prior to serving.
Canned chick peas are fine. I sometimes cook a large batch of them in my pressure-cooker, but I also keep them canned in my well-stocked pantry.
I get saffron at a local Indian market for a very reasonable price. Sometimes I can find it at Ross or Marshall's, and I know Trader Joe's usually has a good price. It is very expensive at a "regular" market.
Macro Nutrients (approximation from MyFitnessPal): 560 calories; 35 g protein; 42 g carbohydrates; 24 g fat (excluding bread).
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