Chicken with capsicum, olives and ham recipe

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This may look like a recipe from a contemporary food magazine, but it’s actually an old Spanish dish, pollo al chilindrón a simple, rich stew that is just delicious, trendy or not. A well-hopped dark ale isn’t an obvious choice here, but pairs well with the extra depth from the ham, olives and paprika. The flavours of this dish will ‘warm up’ as it cools down, meaning it tastes better if not eaten piping hot. Conversely, the flavours in the dark ale will benefit from not being too cold.

  • Yield: 4 Servings


  • 4 ripe tomatoes
  • 8 skinless chicken thigh fillets
  • 2 fl oz/¼ cup (60 ml) olive oil
  • 2 onions sliced into thin wedges
  • 6 garlic cloves chopped
  • 3½ oz (100 g) sliced ham
  • 1 green capsicum (pepper) roughly chopped
  • 1 red capsicum (pepper) roughly chopped
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 3¼ oz/½ cup (90 g) green olives
  • 3¼ oz/½ cup (90 g) black Spanish olives
  • small handful flat-leaf (Italian) parsley sprigs
  • crusty bread to serve
How to Make It
  1. Use a small, sharp knife to cut the core out of each tomato, and cut a small cross in the opposite end. Put the tomatoes in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Leave for just a minute, then drain and rinse under cold water. Peel the tomatoes and cut in half. Scoop the seeds out and finely chop the flesh.
  2. Season the chicken with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Heat the oil in a heavy-based saucepan or frying pan over medium–high heat. Cook the chicken for 2–3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Remove to a plate.
  3. Add the onion, garlic, ham and capsicums to the pan, stirring well to separate the onion wedges. Reduce the heat to medium, then cover and cook for 10 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes. Add the tomato, then cover and cook for another 5 minutes.
  4. Return the chicken to the pan and stir to coat. Stir in the paprika. Cover and cook for a further 10 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through.
  5. Stir in the olives and parsley. Cook for a couple of minutes to heat the olives through. Serve warm, with crusty bread.

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