Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Chicken in Roasted Garlic & Paprika Sauce

I had a little accident with this sauce; I used some fresh paprika peppers from an assortment of peppers I was growing out from seeds we picked up in Hungary a few years back. My assumption was that they were all reasonably sweet peppers. That assumption, it turned out, was quite, quite wrong. At least one of them was a humdinger of a hot pepper. Everybody still thought this was delicious, some of us because of the hot pepper, and some of us despite the hot pepper. I'll have to try it again with a little more attention to which peppers I am using.

As usual, salt will depend on whether your stock was salted or not, but if not, then try about half a teaspoon of it.

4 to 6 servings
1 hour 45 minutes - 30 minutes prep time

Chicken in Roasted Garlic & Paprika Sauce

3 heads of garlic
2 cups chopped fresh sweet red peppers
8 large (1.5  kilos; 3 pounds) skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs
1/2 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon smoked sweet Spanish or Hungarian paprika
salt to taste
1 tablespoon sherry
1 teaspoon honey

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Trim the garlic heads (HEADS, not cloves), and wrap them in foil. Roast them for about half an hour, until tender.

Meanwhile, wash, core and chop the peppers. Thick-walled peppers are best; such as Alma paprika, but Red Shepherd is widely available and should do. Put the peppers in a roasting pan, and arrange the chicken pieces over them.  Pour on the stock, and put them in the oven with the garlic. At this point, the garlic should be ready in 15 or 20 minutes; at that point remove it and reduce the heat to 350°F. (If the garlic isn't quite done, just leave it in until it is, but do reduce the heat.)

Once the peppers are very soft, in about 45 minutes, remove the pan from the oven. Remove all the peppers into a food processor, and as much of the chicken stock as you can as well. Return the chicken pieces to the oven to continue cooking while you make the sauce.

Squeeze the garlic out of the heads into the food processor, and discard the papery hulls. Add the flour, paprika, salt to taste - this will depend very much on whether your chicken stock was salted or not - the sherry, and the honey. Purée until very smooth. Pull the chicken out of the oven again, and pour the sauce evenly over it. Return it to the oven for another 15 or 20 minutes, until the sauce is thickened and bubbly.

Last year at this time I made Vaguely Asian Cabbage Salad.

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