Easy Paprika Chicken

25 Feb

imageThis recipe makes enough for a crowd, or lots of leftovers.  The paprika lends a smoky, not quite spicy taste  – if you’d like a little more kick, add a little crushed red pepper to the spice blend.  Any kind of  paprika will work.  I used a blend of Hungarian and sweet.

The kids were skeptical while I was cooking, but I got a high compliment at dinner: “This is better than I thought it would be!”

  • 3 lbs chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into 1-2″ pieces
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 5 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large white or yellow onion, sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced as thinly as possible
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream or sour cream
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 1 bag frozen peas

Mix together spices in a large bowl.  Add chicken and toss to coat.

In a large skillet or dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high.  Add half the chicken and cook 4-5 minutes, turning once, until lightly browned on all sides.  Remove chicken and set aside.

Add some more olive oil to the pan if needed, reduce heat to medium, and saute onions, scraping up browned  bits from the pan, until softened, 6-8 minutes.  Add garlic and saute 30 seconds.

Reduce heat to low and add in the bay leaves and tomatoes and stir to combine. Return the chicken to the pan and cover. Simmer for 10-15 minutes until chicken is cooked through, then remove lid, add peas, and cook 5-10 minutes more until sauce is thickened slightly.

Stir lemon juice into heavy cream.  (Omit lemon juice if using sour cream).  Stir a few tablespoons tomato sauce into cream to temper, then add cream to the pan and stir to combine.  Heat through, then serve over rice or pasta, garnishing with grated Parmesan.

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