Pollo al Ajillo
In Spain this would be made with a whole chicken chopped up into small pieces. While it is tasty prepared in that way you tend to get some shattered bone in among the chicken and you can’t be sure which part of the chicken or how much each person is getting. My preference is to use whole drumsticks or thighs which means everyone gets the same amount of chicken and it is a bit less fiddly to eat.
The amount of chicken you use really depends on whether you want this as a tapa or a main course. If you are going to serve it as a tapa then i think this is a good recipe for 8 people and you should use drumsticks not thighs, as a main course this would be good for 4 people but depending on appetite and size of chicken pieces you may want to use 12 thighs or drumsticks.
Serves 4 people
- 2 or 3 tablespoons plain flour
- 4 tablespoons of olive oil
- 5-7 garlic cloves, finely sliced
- 8 chicken thighs or drumsticks
- 750ml white wine
- 1 chicken stock cube
- 2 bay leaves
- salt and pepper
Put the flour on a large flat dish and coat the chicken pieces lightly on all sides – this flour is to thicken the sauce a little.
Place a flame proof casserole on a low heat and put the 4 tablespoons of olive oil into it. Cook the garlic slices gently in this oil until they are tender and golden which should take about 5 minutes. It is very important that they don’t burn so make sure you keep stirring them. Remove them with a slotted spoon and leave them on a small plate.
Keeping the casserole on a medium to high heat put in half the chicken pieces and fry until they are golden brown on all sides. Remove and keep them on a plate while you fry the other four chicken pieces. Once all the chicken has been fried like this put it all back into the casserole, season with salt and pepper and add the wine and chicken stock cube. If the chicken is not fully covered add cold water until it is. Add the bay leaves and the fried garlic and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down to a gentle simmer, put the lid on the casserole and cook for an hour.
Taste the dish and add more salt if necessary. If the sauce seems too thick add a little water and if it is too thin dissolve some flour in cold water and mix it into the casserole.
Cook for 20 minutes more with the lid off.
Serve with boiled potatoes or crusty bread.