One of the things I most looked forward to before studying abroad was trying traditional Spanish cuisine. While there are plenty of unique restaurants and bars in Granada, I have been able to experience a lot of the local flavor just from what my host mom cooks on a daily basis!
Below, I've shared a recipe for "Pollo Escabechado," which translates to "marinated chicken." It's delicious, super simple, and really represents the simple, fresh flavors of Southern Spain. My host mom explained to me that this method of cooking was originally a popular way to prepare chicken and fish before anything like a refrigerator existed because the wine and vinegar helped to preserve the meat. Even though we do have the convenience of refrigerators nowadays, this recipe can easily be made ahead and kept in the fridge until ready to eat later the same day, or 2-3 days in advance. You can read through the recipe below, as well as see pictures of the cooking process and final outcome.
serves: 4 time: 20 minutes
- 1 cup olive oil
- kosher salt
- 2 medium onions, halved and sliced
- 4-5 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into thick rounds
- 1 cup white wine
- ½ cup white vinegar
- 1 lb. thinly sliced chicken breast fillets
- 1 T whole peppercorns
- 8-10 dried bay leaves
- 1-2 cups water (you may not need it all)
|even though this recipe is distinctly Spanish, these common ingredients can be found anywhere in the world|
- Put oil in a deep pot; heat on medium-high and add onions and a good pinch of salt. Sauté the onions for 2-3 minutes. Add carrots and continue cooking a few more minutes until the onions start to get soft and translucent.
- Add the wine and vinegar and stir to combine.
|sauteeing the onions and carrots in oil, white wine, and vinegar|
Place one layer of chicken fillets over the vegetables, sprinkle with salt, and flip to cover with liquid. Repeat with more fillets and salt until the all the chicken is incorporated. Add the peppercorns and bay leaves, cover, and lower temperature to cook about 5 minutes. The chicken will cook first, but keep it on low and test the carrots for tenderness after another 5-10 minutes. Add water as needed as the other liquids evaporate and to even out the flavor. Season to taste with salt.
|adding the first layer of chicken to the pot; because the fillets are so thin, they will shrink a lot after they simmer in the liquid|
Serve the dish warm or store in the fridge for up to 3 days: best served with a salad and bread for soaking up the marinade.
I hope you will try this recipe at home and enjoy having a little Spanish flair at your table. ¡Buen provecho!
|a plate complete with the chicken, a simple salad, and fresh bread!|
Anastasia K. is the Spring 2018 CEA MOJO Blogger in Granada, Spain. She is currently a Junior studying English at Liberty University.
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