The very best part of autumn is filling your kitchen with the rich, welcoming aromas of one-pot dishes and casseroles. These are dishes that are the heart and soul of your kitchen.
This is my adaptation of a Daniel Boulud recipe. It uses the brilliant red pepper so prolific in the markets. Chicken legs, slowly simmered until the meat falls from the bone delivers great flavour.
BASQUE CHICKEN AND CHORIZO SAUTE … serves 4-6 people
4 oz dry chorizo, sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 tb extra-virgin olive oil
6 whole chicken legs, split (around 3 1/2 lbs)
2 medium red bell peppers, cut into 1/2 thick strips
2 medium red onions, thinly sliced
6 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 large thyme sprigs
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved or 1 cup drained San Marzano whole tomatoes
3/4 cup dry sherry
2 tsp sweet paprika
3/4 tsp crushed red pepper
2 tbs shredded basil
Crusty French bread, for serving
Saute the chorizo in a deep skillet over moderate heat, stirring, until lightly browned and some of the fat is rendered, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon transfer the chorizo to a large plate.
Heat the olive oil in the skillet. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat, turning once, until well browned, 15 minutes. Add the chicken to the chorizo.
Add the bell peppers, red onions, garlic, crushed red pepper and thyme to the skillet and cook over moderate heat until barely softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, sherry, paprika and cook until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.
Put the chicken and the chorizo into a large baking dish and cover with the sauce. Cover and bake in a 350 oven for around 3/4 of an hour. Remove the cover and bake for 5 or 10 minutes more so the sauce thickens. Stir the basil into the sauce and serve with crusty bread.