Paprika and Sumac Braised Chicken with Carrots

Sumac and Paprika Braised Chicken (A Seat at the Table)
Sumac and Paprika Braised Chicken (A Seat at the Table)

How do you decide what to make when you have company coming over?  Do you stick with an old standby recipe, or try something new with the potential for deliciousness or disaster?

I typically end up trying something new, with the promise that if whatever I make turns out to be inedible I’ll order pizza to make up for it.  Fortunately I’ve never had to do that…not that everything I make is great, but usually edible.  So when trying out a new recipe, I make sure to read the recipe a couple times through, double and triple check that I have all the ingredients (or a plan if I change the ingredients), and then prep early.  Sumac and Paprika Braised Chicken Prep (A Seat at the Table)

This dish is delicious and comes together rather quickly.  You’ll want to make sure that you have everything prepped ahead of time so you’re not scrambling at the last minute.  That way in addition to having everything prepared so there are no surprises and no last minute forgotten ingredients, you’ll also have a few minutes while things cook to tidy up the kitchen.

This chicken is super tender, and extremely well flavored.  While I don’t normally enjoy cooked carrots, these carrots came out tender without being mushy and they absorb a ton of flavor from the cooking.  I decided to add in the carrot greens since my carrots came with their tops on the first time.  The greens are quite mild and are a great way to get even more of the broth flavor.

The second time I made this (two days later), I added in a summer squash that I had on hand.  It was great!  Definitely a wonderful way to use up the last of the summer squash.  I tried using chicken breast the second time, which worked well.  I just halved the chicken breasts so they were about the same size as the thighs.  The chicken breasts are a little drier, but if that’s what you have on hand they’ll definitely be delicious.

This recipe was a total crowd pleaser and will definitely be a recipe I come back to frequently, especially because it looks super fancy without being challenging.  I think it’d also be great with cauliflower in addition to/or instead of the carrots.  And I highly recommend serving this with (brown) rice, since it absorbs all the juices.

Paprika and Sumac Braised Chicken with CarrotsSumac and Smoked Paprika Braised Chicken (A Seat at the Table)

Serves 6

Adapted from Healthy Nibbles and Bits

  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (trimmed of fat if necessary)
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced (or one red onion)
  • 3 garlic coves, minced
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp sumac
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 10 oz carrots (about 8 small carrots), halved lengthwise
  • 1-2 small summer squash, quartered lengthwise
  • 1 small lemon, thinly sliced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • thinly sliced scallions, to garnish

Trim any excess fat off your chicken and season with salt and pepper.  Heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet (that has a matching lid) over medium high heat.  When the pan is hot, add chicken seasoned side down.  Sear for 3 minutes on each side, only flipping when it has good color.  Remove chicken to a clean plate.

Turn the heat down to medium and add the sliced shallots.  Add a pinch of salt, and sauté for a minute until beginning to soften.  Add garlic and stir until fragrant.  Add in the spices, and mix well, stirring for about 30 seconds.  Pour in the vegetable stock, then arrange the carrots and squash on the bottom of the pan, and add the chicken on top, nestling the chicken down into the broth.  Top the chicken with lemon slices.  Put the lid on the pot and braise for 8-10 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.

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