This Garlic Chicken (Pollo al Ajillo) will prove you that Spanish cuisine is not only about tapas and paellas. The chicken is cooked with garlic, plus it’s covered and baked in a fantastic garlic and wine sauce. There is never too much of garlic!
In the last post I talked about my decision to take steps towards a healthier lifestyle. So far so good. I’ve changed my menu and included more healthy food options such as rice, low fat cottage cheese, more veggies. I have also totally excluded any sweet things from my diet as well as fruit and berries in the evening. Well, that’s a start! For dinner I usually have either some kind of fish or chicken / turkey with veggies. Today I want to share a wonderful chicken recipe I found few days ago with you. Meet Pollo al Ajillo or simply Spanish Garlic Chicken.
I found this recipe in the “New Spanish Table” cookbook I own. My hubby bought it few years ago during our honeymoon in Barcelona. Ah, good times! We visited so many AMAZING restaurants and inevitably fell in love with Spanish cuisine. It’s impossible not to, after tasting all the mind-blowing tapas and paellas! Pollo al Ajillo, however, was not something we got a chance to taste while honeymooning in Spain. I made this garlic chicken for the first time in my life only few days ago, and I am already addicted. I’m telling you, it’s so good!
When the fantastic aroma of garlic and wine filled my kitchen while chicken was still in the oven, it became clear as a day – this recipe is a winner. I love how garlic is used two times in this Pollo al Ajillo recipe: the first time it’s cooked unpeeled together with chicken (to give meat a garlick-y flavor), while later another batch of peeled garlic is used for the wine sauce. Perfect.
The original recipe calls for the whole chicken cut into pieces, but I substituted it with the boneless chicken thighs. The level of my laziness lately amazes even me. Oh well, I still cooked something, right? Serve this Spanish chicken with a generous spoonful (or a few) of the garlic wine sauce. Your taste buds will thank you!
- 1 chicken (about 3½ pounds or 1.6kg) cut into pieces, and trimmed of all fat (can be substituted with 2½ pounds boneless chicken thighs)
- sea salt, to taste
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, for frying
- 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 12 unpeeled garlic cloves, lightly smashed
- 10 peeled garlic cloves, sliced
- ½ dried small red chile, crumbled (optional)
- ⅔ cup dry white wine
- ⅓ cup chicken stock
- 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- In a bowl, rub the chicken pieces with salt. Let stand for 30 minutes or so.
- Preheat the oven to 425 °F (220 °C).
- In a 12-inch skillet, heat the olive oil until hot. Lightly dust the chicken pieces with flour and shake off the excess. Add the 12 unpeeled garlic cloves to the skillet and cook for about 1 minute, stirring them to coat with the olive oil. Add the chicken pieces and cook for about 10 minutes, until browned. Transfer the cooked chicken pieces to a baking dish.
- Discard the garlic cloves. In the same skillet, over low heat, cook the peeled garlic cloves, for about 2 minutes. Add the chile and stir. Add 1 teaspoon flour and stir for 20 seconds. Add the wine, chicken stock, and bring to a boil. Season with salt to taste and pour the sauce over the chicken pieces. Bake for about 15 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Stir in the vinegar and parsley. Serve the chicken with a few spoonfuls of the garlic wine sauce. Enjoy!