Wednesday, May 20, 2015

A Taste of Europe - Hungary (Chicken Paprika)

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A Taste of Europe - Hungary (Chicken Paprika) on Homeschool Coffee Break @

When we started our Taste of Europe project, we had this crazy idea that we'd be able to do a recipe every week or so through the school year. Now as we're nearing the end of the year, I am wondering what on earth I was thinking when I came up with that expectation?! Needless to say, we have not kept up the pace - not even close! But I dusted off the list of possible recipes I'd collected and set it with my grocery list and menu plans (such as they are) and we're going to see if we can get a flurry of international foods activity going again.

A Taste of Europe - Hungary (Chicken Paprika) on Homeschool Coffee Break @
A long time ago, we studied the country of Hungary. The Hungarian people are descendents of the Magyars who invaded central Europe in AD 896. Their language is Uralic, associated with the Ural Mountains between Europe and Asia. The country of Hungary lies south of the Carpathian Mountains, taking up most of the Great Hungarian Plain. The plain is useful for pasturing and for crops, so Hungary's farmland is some of the best in Europe. The capital city, Budapest, lies on the Danube River at the foot of the mountains. It is the fourth-largest city in Europe, with more than two million residents. 

Paprika is a spice made from dried chili peppers, and is commonly associated with Hungarian cuisine. In other parts of the world, the same spice is known as pimenton. The plant used in the Hungarian version has been grown in Buda since 1529, and Hungary is a major source of commonly used paprika, which comes in many varieties. Hungarian paprika is often specified in recipes, and is often preferred for its bright red color and robust flavor. 

I've made Chicken Paprika several times over the past year or so, but let me be the first to say it is not a photogenic meal. It's just not. I've tried, but there's no way to make it look attractive. And I thought I looked bad in pictures...

This first one is probably the best, but really doesn't do justice to how good it is.
A Taste of Europe - Hungary (Chicken Paprika) on Homeschool Coffee Break @

A Taste of Europe - Hungary (Chicken Paprika) on Homeschool Coffee Break @

A Taste of Europe - Hungary (Chicken Paprika) on Homeschool Coffee Break @    A Taste of Europe - Hungary (Chicken Paprika) on Homeschool Coffee Break @

Still want to try it? I looked up recipes in a few different places, and mostly followed the one given at Global Table Adventure. It's simple, and I prefer simple. You really can't go wrong with Chicken Paprika, unless you try to take pictures.

Chicken Paprika
3-4 pounds chicken pieces (I have used bone-in thighs, boneless thighs, boneless breasts - all work well, so it's just a matter of preference!)
2 tbsp oil, give or take
1 sweet onion, chopped
1 cup chicken broth or stock
2 tbsp paprika
1-1/2 cups sour cream

Brown chicken pieces on all sides in hot oil. Remove the chicken and keep warm, and pour off all but about 1 tbsp of the fat and oil remaining in the skillet. Brown the chopped onion. Add the paprika and chicken broth to the skillet, then return the chicken pieces. Season lightly if you wish. Cover and simmer for about 45 minutes, or until the chicken is tender and falling off the bones. Remove chicken to a serving platter, and whisk sour cream into the cooking liquid. Season again to taste, if necessary. Pour sauce over the chicken. Serve warm over buttered noodles.  Enjoy, but don't take pictures.

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