Curveballs in the kitchen: Spanish Chicken with Chorizo and Potatoes

If you’ve ever had something go wrong while in the middle of cooking, and had a melt down and ordered take out,  you’re not alone, you’re not a horrible person and it’s ok.

Years ago, when I had a gaggle of kids and a hungry husband on his way home from work I would have a meltdown if something went wrong while I was cooking. I am talking full-blown, alarms going off, nuclear melt down. Yep, completely shameful.

Time in the kitchen got me over it along with making sure to get overly critical people out of my life. That’s another story.

Life happens and when it happens in the kitchen it usually is at the worst timing. Take the recipe in this blog post. I was originally going to cook it earlier in the week, shoot pics, and then share with you. I got an offer for an extra shift at work and moved things around, forgetting that I left the sausage in my fridge drawer and moved the recipe to later in the week. Normally that wouldn’t be to big a problem but the “sell or freeze by date” had past and when I looked up the info at the USDA we were on the borderline for the sausage being ok.  “Ok” was good enough for me for some odd reason that day. So, I read a book, took a nap, worked on a few things. Went to cook dinner under a self-inflicted time constraint (we were heading the movies after dinner) and when I opened the package of sausage, surprise!  It smelled so bad even the two cats in the house wouldn’t touch it. Dogs eat anything, cats are smarter.

The little grocery store that was walking distance from my house closed and well I had no time or option to get fresh sausage. Now was not the time for a melt down and honestly, those days are past. I’ve turned into a make do and move on sort of girl.

photo 3

So instead of making Nigella’s dish the way it was intended. I had to change it up. No sausage? Oh well, we can live without two meats.  But I live with a couple of guys who love pork and anything spicy. Only thing better than a spicy sausage is bacon. So I tossed the pan of chicken and potatoes in the oven, defrosted the bacon, snipped it up and tossed it in the last 30 mins of cooking. My men folk were happy and I am guessing this might have been healthier for them as it was less pork than the sausage in the end. I wont tell them that though.

Nigella's version from her cookbook.

Nigella’s version from her cookbook.

Spanish Chicken with Chorizo and Potatoes

From Nigella Kitchen: recipes from the heart of the home.

serves 6

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 12 chicken thighs (bone in)
  • 1 1/4 lbs chorizo sausage, cut into 1 1/2 chunks.
  • 2 1/4 lbs baby white skinned potatoes, halved
  • 2 red onions, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • grated zest of 1 orange
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. In 2 large shallow roasting pans or cookie sheets put the 1 tblsp of oil in bottom of each. Rub the chicken in the oil then turn skin side up, 6 pieces in each pan
  3. Divide up the chorizo and the potatoes between the two pans. Sprinkle onion and oregano. Grate orange zest over the pans.
  4. Cook in oven for 1 hour. Nigella advises to switch the pans with each other after 30 mins and baste with juices.
My bacon version

My bacon version

I cut this recipe in half and used half a package of bacon and the other half for another meal. It turned out perfect. Actually I sort of like the bacon that cooked on the potatoes. It was a real treat.  I think next time , if I cooked this with bacon, I would add a little smoked paprika to pan.

A side salad or green beans would go great to serve with.

Untill next time,

no meltdowns in the kitchen ok, if you do have one, have a little dark chocolate, take a deep breath and let your creative side come out to save the day. Who knows what you will create!




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