We appear to be nearing the end of renovations on our house–and since I do not appear to be a blogger who soldiers on in the face of adversity, this also means the end of our hiatus. I’m looking forward to getting back. It’s been a long slog to get in a place where we finally feel at home again.
The house includes a new kitchen, one for which I’m exceptionally grateful because for about 10 weeks I had no kitchen at all and no appliances except the refrigerator. Have you ever considered how wonderful it is that the faucet in your kitchen rotates? Or that you can rinse a pot in it? If not, try washing your dishes in your bathroom sink for a couple of months. You will have a new appreciation for the luxury in which you live.
The renovation experience also revealed to me how dearly I love to cook. Rather than eat out, I tackled and defeated my nemesis, The Grill, and set up shop in the living room using my great-grandmother’s pie safe, pictured below.
Luckily, summer lends itself to salads, sandwiches, wraps, and many other items that don’t require a stove. I also concocted several nice cold soups and determined that indeed you must seed cucumbers before pureeing them.
But the best discovery of the summer was paprika chicken. This was Fred’s favorite. His aunt recommended this dish to us ages ago, but I was prompted to try it only recently because I was desperate for something I could put together on a countertop the size of a handkerchief. I never wrote down a recipe but this is a dish that doesn’t really need one. The zest of the paprika, the crisp chicken skin, the juiciness of thigh meat, and the smokiness of the grill all come together in a simple but unbeatable combination.
You can make this dish in a 350 oven and finish under the broiler, but only the grill gives you a crispy exterior and a properly thick coating of the sauce.
Grilled Paprika Chicken
Four servings (one chicken thigh per person)
Grill directions are for a large kettle grill. Make a medium hot fire. I use a big pile of lump charcoal. Once flames have died down I cover the grill and open the vents, and wait until there are red embers. The whole thing usually takes about 30 minutes. My grill has a thermometer & the temperature needs to be about 450 for this to work well.
For the chicken, salt four chicken thighs, bone in & skin on and set aside. Make a paste of paprika and oil. You can use smoked or regular paprika and whatever oil suits you. We have tried canola and olive with success. Use about a quarter cup of oil and three tablespoons paprika. Spread over the chicken breasts. Grill, covered, for 20 minutes or so, turning once.