Spanish Chicken with Almonds and Saffron

The flavours of Spain really sing to me and I love cooking food that reminds me of a holiday. The smell of saffron and chicken in this dish takes me back to sunny days and balmy nights in bustling Barcelona. If I close my eyes tight enough, I can even picture myself right back in that tapas bar without a care in the world, just the European summer before me and a glass of house sangria, of course. I usually make this with my favourite chicken and chorizo pilaf recipe here, but I ‘d leave out the chicken and make it just with the chorizo and peppers instead, which is a great side dish. I hope you enjoy this one as much as I do, ole!


What you’ll need:
⅓ cup flaked almonds
⅓ cup olive oil, divided
8 chicken thighs, skin on
Sea salt & Freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup plain flour
1 tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp saffron threads
¼ cup hot water
1 large onion, finely diced
2 cloves of garlic, finely grated
1 cup (250 ml) white wine
2 cups (500ml) chicken stock
2 bay leaves
⅓ cup almond meal
2-3 sprigs continental parsley, chopped, to serve

What to do:

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Place the almonds on a baking tray and roast for 4-5 minutes until golden. Set aside.

Place the flour in a large bowl and mix through paprika until combined. Season the chicken well with salt and pepper and dust in flour. Heat half the olive oil in an oven-proof casserole over medium heat. Working in batches, cook the chicken for 5 minutes, turning, until browned. Remove from pan and repeat with remaining chicken. Set chicken aside.

Place the saffron in the hot water and set aside to infuse for 5 minutes. Place casserole back on the heat and add remaining oil. Cook the onion and garlic, stirring, for 5 minutes until soft. Add the wine, stock, bay leaves, almond meal and saffron (with water). Return chicken to the pot and bring to a simmer. Transfer to oven and cook, covered, for 30 minutes, then uncovered for a further 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve chicken topped with toasted flaked almonds and parsley leaves.

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