We know that some of the classic European family dishes fell out of favour for a while, overtaken by stir fries, poke bowls, cous cous salads and the like but d’ya know what? There’s always a place for a good paprikash in our hearts and on our tables. Old school ingredients like sour cream and paprika (crikey, I’m even spotting butter and flour here!) are comforting and familiar, with a welcoming generosity that says so much about the warm-hearted Middle European post-war immigrants who’ve spread their love for dishes like this across the world. All that, in a dinner that comes together in an easy half hour of relaxed cooking with ingredients you don’t have to hunt across town for? Take that, poke bowls! And pass the mash!
700g free-range chicken thigh fillets, diced into bite-sized pieces
1 tbs sweet Hungarian paprika
1 tsp salt
1 tbs rice bran or other neutrally flavoured oil
160 mushrooms (we like Swiss brown), sliced
Pinch of salt and ground black pepper
2 tbs unsalted butter
1 large onion, diced
1 green capsicum, seeds removed and diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
0.5 tsp salt
1 heaped tbs tomato paste
1 tbs plain flour (optional)
150ml chicken stock
3 tbs sour cream
Big handful parsley, finely chopped
To serve: mashed potato, buttered noodles or polenta and a green vegetable
Mix chicken with paprika and first salt amount. Heat the rice bran oil in a deep skillet or large frying pan and brown the chicken in batches – it doesn’t need to be cooked at this stage.
Fry the mushrooms in the chicken oil till browning and starting to collapse. Season with a pinch of salt and black pepper and reserve.
Add the butter, onion, green capsicum and garlic to the pan along with the half teaspoon of salt and cook gently until the onions are soft and sweet. Stir in the tomato paste and flour if using, then add the chicken stock and the reserved chicken. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked. Stir in the reserved mushrooms and sour cream and bring back up to heat. Sprinkle with parsley and taste for seasoning.
Serve with mashed potatoes, buttered noodles or polenta and a green vegetable like beans or spinach.