When people come to stay, I like to get food they like. Consequently, since my boyfriend went back home, there has been a lot of chorizo in the fridge, and I have had no idea what to do with it. Thus, tonight was my first attempt at chicken and chorizo paella, using an online recipe. And it was brilliant. I noted in the ‘comments’ section that somebody had angrily written that ‘real’ paella should never have chorizo in it, and so whilst admittedly this might apparently not be authentic paella, it is definitely delicious, and in my opinion, in this case, taste beats tradition.
The rice was tender, and vegetables cooked in stock with paprika gave the dish a fantastic sauce, full of flavour. The smokiness of the chorizo was complemented perfectly by the paprika, and the parsley gave the dish freshness throughout. The combination of these ingredients not only resulted in brilliant flavour, but presentation; the contrasting colours vividly stood out, making it look great on the plate. Moreover, the majority of the cooking process for this dish was simmering, enabling you to do other things whilst it cooked; I think this timing plus the easy presentation would make it a good dish to serve to company, as you would not be slave to the kitchen at the expense of your friends, nor slave to hosting at the expense of good food! This dish also has the added bonus of freezing – frozen portions guarantees a good meal being readily available in advance for those days where time is pushed!
Honestly, I have little or no criticism for this dish. I would perhaps next time experiment with using thighs and proper chorizo sausage, but as it was, for an end-of-week supper, it was excellent. More please!
Ingredients – for 2
- Chorizo: you can use either sausage, or ‘platter’ style slices
- Chicken: thighs are more traditional, but since I used chorizo anyway, authenticity was lost, so I used breast!
- Olive oil
- 1 red onion, diced
- 2 medium garlic cloves, crushed
- ½ tbsp. smoked sweet paprika
- Rice: I used long grain, because it’s cheaper than paella rice. Although it works just as well, short grain is preferable! Roughly 2 ½ – 3 handfuls per person
- 600ml chicken stock
- 1 red, 1 yellow pepper, sliced
- Green beans, trimmed
- 3 large tomatoes, quartered
- Flatleaf parsley
- Heat oil in a large, deep frying pan (or saucepan) over a medium heat. If using chicken thighs, prick with a fork and add to the oil; cook until the skin is golden brown and the juices run clear, then remove to a plate. If using breast, cut into thick chunks and fry until golden, and keep in the pan.
- If using chorizo sausage, slice into thick chunks and fry until golden – remove to the plate alongside the chicken thighs. If using chorizo platter slices, this will be added later instead.
- Add the diced onion and cook until it begins to soften (roughly 5-8 minutes) then add the garlic and paprika and fry for a further minute.
- Add the rice to the pan, and stir to coat well in the oil and paprika. Add the hot stock, stir once to ensure all the rice is submerged, and then cover with a lid. Reduce to a low heat, and leave to simmer for 10 minutes.
- If using chicken thighs, return them at this point to the pan. Then, add the sliced peppers, trimmed beans and quartered tomatoes to the pan. Simmer for 5 minutes, until the vegetables are slightly al dente. Stir the rice. The rice should have absorbed the majority of the stock, but a small sauce should still remain. If the rice has no sauce, it is in danger of sticking to the bottom of the pan, so a little more stock or hot water.
- Now add the chorizo. For the sausage, season and then transfer from the plate to the pan. If using platter slices, tear into rough slices, add to the pan and stir well until combined. Check the level of stock, and if not too dry, replace the pan lid, and simmer for 5 minutes more until warmed through.
- Remove the lid, season, and stir in flatleaf parsley.
- Serve, topping with a little more parsley, and lemon wedges if you want to make it look fancy!