LC Hah! Note
If you’re anything like us, you may as well forget satisfying your and three other appetites with this tapas, as suggested by the number of servings above. Hah! Just can’t be done, not when it’s so tricky to stop tossing back small bites of warmly spiced chicken. Perhaps consider it an entree instead, for two not four, spooning the chicken over rice to soak up every last drop of that sauce.
Port and Paprika Chicken Bites
- Quick Glance
- 20 M
- 30 M
- Serves 4 as tapas
Grind the garlic and bay leaves together in the work bowl of a hand blender or mini chopper. (Alternatively, chop the garlic by hand and finely crumble the bay leaves and combine.) Add the port, 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, the vinegar, paprika, and salt and pulse until well combined.
Pour the mixture over the chicken, cover, and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
Just before cooking, chop enough cilantro to make 1/2 cup. Scatter the cilantro on a serving plate.
Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil on medium-high heat in a wok or large skillet. With a slotted spoon, scoop the chicken pieces out of the marinade and into the hot oil, arranging the chicken in a single layer and discarding the marinade. Cook until browned on the bottom, 2 to 3 minutes, then stir-fry until cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes more. Scoop the chicken out of the pan, leaving any excess oil behind, and place the chicken on the cilantro.
Add the onion to the oil in the hot pan, return it to medium-high heat, and cook, stirring, until the onion is browned at the edges, about 2 minutes. Scoop the onion out of the oil and strew it over the chicken.
Serve the plate of chicken bites hot or at room temperature, sprinkled with a touch of salt and with cocktail picks or toothpicks for handling.
Recipe Testers' Reviews
Being Portuguese and having tried something similar in Spain, I knew I had to try this recipe. What really grabbed my attention was the cilantro, as this added more of a Portuguese flair than a Spanish one. I used ruby port, as in my mind tawny can be a tad too strong and overpower the meat when used as a marinade. The marinade itself is extremely fast to make, and I decided right away to double the recipe and use half on cubed chicken and the other half on chicken wings. I served it with plain white rice, which was the perfect complement, as the sauce (though there was only a little) brought a different dimension to the rice. The chicken came out extremely juicy and tasty, where one could easily detect all of its ingredients. This is a recipe to do over and over again. I will most likely always have some frozen for a last-minute appetizer.
Aside from the marinating time, this dish comes together very quickly. While it would certainly make a good starter or nibble if you’re entertaining, for just the two of us, I served it as a main dish. You get a lot of flavor bang for your effort buck with this recipe. Since we love cilantro around here, we scooped up plenty of it to mix in with the chicken on the plate. I used white port for this recipe, since I had some on hand. I’m sure that is not what the authors intended, but it works fine. I think you could have quite a bit of leeway with the type of alcohol used, as long as it is fairly sweet, to balance out the vinegar in the marinade.