Pollo en Chilindron (Chicken and Pepper Stew)

Pollo en Chilindron is a Chicken and Pepper Stew that is typical of Aragon region of Spain in Zaragoza, somewhere around Northeastern Spain but is also widely known in Spain and some Cubans also adopted this delicious dish. It’s basically chicken in a delicious tomato based sauce with lots of red bell peppers and onions with a smokey flavor.

There are several versions of this dish I have seen, the common stuff is they all have tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, and something to make it smokey (be it some sort of cured meat, paprika, or something that adds heat which is optional)

I don’t know if my recipe is “authentic” or not or even “traditional” but this is what I came up with after observing many other recipes and is what suits my families taste, we like bold flavors, rich sauces, and lots of garlic.

-1 small Chicken (about 3- 3 1/2 lbs.) cut into 8 pieces (segments)
-6 slices of bacon minced
-3 large red bell peppers julienned
-1-2 large yellow onion julienned or
-1 head garlic cloves peeled (mashed to a paste)
-4 ripe large tomatos pureed or 2 cans tomato sauce
-1 cup dry white wine
-1 tablespoon sweet smoked spanish paprika
-1 tablespoon ground cumin
-1/2 tablespoon hot smoked Spanish paprika (more if you like spicy to taste)
-2 large bay leaves
salt to taste
extra-virgin olive oil
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(1)Season chicken with salt, and brown on all sides in olive oil on medium high in a large deep pot (takes about 15-20 minutes total) Set aside in a seperate plate.
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(2)Add minced bacon and render it’s fat when browning add onions and bell peppers cook down 5-7 minutes, then add garlic sautee 3 minutes, hten add paprika’s and cumin sautee 30-60 seconds until fragrant.
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(3)Add wine and let reduce a but, then tomato and simmer 5 minutes. Add chicken back and coat well with sofrito mixture. Dilute sauce with water IF DESIRED (maybe 1/2 – 1 cup water or non at all depends)
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(4)Simmer covered until cooked around 35-45 minutes. Serve with good bread or steamed rice and maybe a raw salad if desired dressed in olive oil, salt, and vinegar or lemon or lime.
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Please Note:
*In my house we also make a version of it that we do using lamb, mutton, or goats meat that is Spanish in origin but Cubanized a bit:

“Chilindron de Carnero” (Cuban Goat or Lamb Stew)

*The American variety and also Hungarian Paprikas have a completely different taste to the sweet smoked Spanish paprikas which are smoked with some type of oak wood. I buy “La Chinata” brand online (well I really don’t my wonderful boyfriend ordered me some for my birthday) it’s from “La Vera” they are very flavorful and delicious.

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