Chicken and rice make a great combination for entertaining, as they please almost every palate. For this dish, we jazz up the duo with chorizo, a Spanish smoked sausage that is a staple in paella recipes. You can also use the more familiar (and less spicy) kielbasa.
What you'll need
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces, or 4 legs and 4 thighs
- Salt and pepper
- 16 ounces sausage (chorizo or kielbasa) cut into half-moon slices
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 cups medium-grain rice
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Pinch of saffron
- 1 cup seeded and chopped tomato
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
How to make it
Heat the oven to 400°. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then place it in the skillet to brown, about 4 to 5 minutes a side. If needed, work in batches so the skillet isn't overcrowded.
Transfer the browned chicken to a plate. Add the sausage to the pan and sauté it until lightly browned, about 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the sausage to the plate with the chicken.
Drain all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the pan. Lower the heat to medium, then add the onion, red pepper, and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 6 minutes. Add the rice, cumin, salt, and saffron. Stir to coat the rice and cook for about 1 minute.
Transfer the rice and vegetable mixture to an oiled 9- by 13-inch baking dish. Arrange the chicken and sausage on the rice and scatter the tomato over the top. Place the pan on the center oven rack and carefully pour the chicken stock over the meat and rice. Bake for 25 minutes.
Sprinkle the peas on top and cook until the liquid has been absorbed, another 10 to 15 minutes. Let the paella cool for at least 10 minutes before serving. Serves 8.