Paprika Chicken

Paprika chicken: French flair and fine protein fare

Paprika chicken: French flair and fine protein fare

French cuisine is a gift for food combiners as it isn’t overloaded with heavy protein-starch mixes, emphasises taste rather than portions without skimping on the latter, and uses fine ingredients. Physically and psychologically, it conveys a sense of elegant dining rather than fuelling up to till the field.

A friend prepared this Raymond Blanc-inspired paprika chicken recipe for me. It was exquisite.

It is also salt-free, and the sauce contains neither cream nor butter.


Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour
Serves: 2

2 boneless and skinless breasts of chicken
2 teaspoons of Dijon mustard
Freshly ground pepper
50g unsalted butter
1 red pepper
White wine vinegar
100ml white wine
½ onion
½ courgette
1 medium tomato
1½ garlic cloves
1 bouquet garni
250ml light chicken stock or water
200g green beans
100g chestnut mushrooms
Olive oil

1. Peel and chop the onion and courgette. Peel and thinly slice the garlic. Deseed and chop the tomato. Wash and trim the green beans. Wash and slice the mushrooms
2. Cut the top and bottom 2cm off the red pepper. Remove and discard the seeds and stalk but keep all other pieces. Slice the body of the pepper into fine julienne sticks. Chop up 40g of pepper pieces for the sauce
3. Sweat the pepper sticks in 5g of butter. Add 1 teaspoon of white wine vinegar and a pinch of paprika. Cover with a lid and sweat for three minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside
4. While the pepper is sweating, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a frying pan on a medium heat. Add the sliced mushrooms and one clove of garlic (save ½ a clove for the sauce). Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently until the mushrooms are browned but ensure the garlic does not burn. Set aside
5. Pre-heat the oven to 450F/230C/Gas Mark 8
6. In a small saucepan, boil two tablespoons of white wine vinegar and reduce it completely. Then add the white wine, reduce it by half, and add the 250ml of light chicken stock or water, and set aside
7. Over a low heat, sweat the onion and pepper pieces in 20g of butter for five minutes
8. Add the courgette, tomato, ½ a clove of garlic and bouquet garni and cook for a further three minutes
9. Add the reduced vinegar, white wine and chicken stock or water, and simmer for 10 minutes. Add a large pinch of paprika and allow to cool
10. While the sauce is simmering, boil the green beans for 5-10 minutes. They should retain a bite and not be soft. Drain and add to the mushrooms and garlic, and set aside
11. Return to the cooled sauce, remove the bouquet garni and liquidise the mixture until it is a very fine puree. Taste, season with pepper and set aside
12. Coat the chicken breasts with a film of mustard. Season with pepper and dust all over with paprika
13. In a large pan, heat 20g of butter over a medium heat until it turns golden brown
14. Fry the chicken breasts, without browning, for three minutes on each side. Transfer the chicken (and butter) to an ovenproof dish and cook in the preheated oven for five minutes
15. While the chicken is in the oven, reheat the green beans and mushrooms together on a low heat. Cover with a lid and stir occasionally. Also, separately reheat the pepper sticks and the sauce
16. Remove the chicken from the oven and serve, spooning the sauce around the chicken and garnishing with the sticks. Add the green bean and mushroom accompaniment

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