Paprika Chicken with Pasta in a Tomato-Cream Sauce.

Paprika Chicken with Pasta in a Tomato-Cream Sauce.

I made this for dinner last night, serving it with broccoli. This sauce was simply AMAZING, and I truly wonder how I have lived my life without such yumminess! We topped off the spicy flavor of this dish with small bowls of vanilla pudding, and the entire meal was perfectly delish!

Paprika Chicken with Pasta in a Tomato-Cream Sauce

  • 5 chicken complete chicken legs (with most of the thigh intact as well)
  • 2.5 tsp. salt (divided into 5 amounts of .5 tsp each)
  • 2.5 tsp. ground black pepper (divided the same)
  • 2.5 tsp. dried oregano (divided)
  • 2.5 tsp. dried basil leaves(divided)
  • 1.25 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes (divided)
  • 5 Tbsp. paprika
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 oz. can tomato paste
  • 14 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 24 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 16 oz. medium pasta shells
  • 1 cup sour cream

Rinse the legs well and pat dry. Lay them out on a paper towel near your stove/skillet. Sprinkle each chicken leg with 1/2 tsp. each of salt, pepper, dried oregano, and dried basil leaves, as well as 1/4 tsp. of crushed red pepper flakes, and 1 Tbsp. paprika. The chicken will look like it is covered in a mossy dirt by the time all spices have been added. Rub the spice coating into the skin and flesh of each piece until the chicken is covered well.

In a large skillet (mine is 12″, if that helps), heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Put the chicken pieces carefully in the pan, skin-side down; sear until they are a deep golden color and slightly crispy (about 5-6 minutes or so). Turn the chicken and do the same to the fleshy side. Once the chicken is seared, remove it from the pan; set aside.

Searing the rubbed chicken.

Next, turn the heat to medium and add the onions and garlic to the pan. Really scrape them around with your spoon, gathering all the seasoning bits left in the pan. Saute until soft and fragrant, about 7 minutes.

Sauteing the onion and garlic.

Change the temperature to medium-low, and add the tomato paste and tomatoes to the pan. Stir everything together well, and then nestle the chicken, skin-side up, into the sauce. Cover and simmer for 80-90 minutes. Set a timer to check every 20 minutes, turning the chicken and stirring the sauce to prevent burning.

Simmering the chicken in sauce.

In the last 20-30 minutes, begin preparing your pasta. Once the water is boiling, add the pasta and cook until al dente; about 12 minutes. Drain very well and keep warm.

Remove the chicken to your serving plates (1 piece for each person). Place your sour cream in a small mixing bowl, and add two large spoonfuls of sauce to it; whisk until smooth (this is “temping” your cream, keeping the cream from chunking in the sauce from heat shock).

Temping the sour cream.

Once the sour cream is temped, add it into the tomato mixture, blending well. Stir in the cooked pasta; serve next to the chicken pieces.

Adding the cream to the sauce.

Yield: 5 servings (and probably enough pasta for one more bowl by itself, too!)

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