Feb 15, 2010

Chicken Palava (African peanut stew)

Chicken Palava

I have a pretty special (and simple) dinner recipe for you. Not so special you can’t whip it up during any given weeknight, but it’s a fun recipe. It’s different, and that’s exactly what we need now and then.

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while now, it won’t come as a surprise to you that I’m a serious peanut-o-holic. I love anything peanut, and simply have to try every recipe that includes some form of peanut (butter). And anything bacon, but that’s a different posting all together. Bottom-line; I’m weak and proud of it. Don’t tell me you’re any different. I won’t buy into it!


It’s why I came up with my peanut flavored potatoes, and several other recipes calling for peanut butter. But one of my favorites—though the photos are pretty darn bad—will always be my Ghanaian peanut soup. This Chicken Palava is also a peanut based African recipe that will blow you away. If you like the soup, then you will surely like this one as well.  

I realize what a big leap it is from the iron pots and wooden spoons type of food in Ghana to my Le Creuset in Dutch suburbia, but seriously guys, I’m taking you to Africa with me!  

Ingredients:   

1 pound chicken fillet
1 pretty large onion
1 large red bell pepper
2 large garlic cloves
2 big, juicy tomatoes
1/2 pound fresh spinach
4 tbsp (peanut) oil
1 tsp sesame oil
1/4 tsp chili powder (hot)
1/2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp dried thyme”
5 tbsp peanut butter
2 cups chicken broth
extra brown sugar
pepper
salt   



Directions:   

Somehow I always find myself using the same basic ingredients such as onion, bell pepper, garlic etc. I’m pretty sure I don’t have to show you for the umpth time how to dice an onion, peel tomatoes, grate garlic and chop stuff, so I just turn this…
 Chicken Palava   

….into this. There. All done.
Chicken Palava   

Cut the chicken into tiny cubes. Remember the yellow cutting board I had? It died on me. And for the life of me, I can’t seem to find a new one. So I just wrote “Kip” (meaning chicken) on a red one, and that makes it okay to use the red one for chicken. See, I do have a logical system. I really do!  
Chicken Palava   

Don’t you love big storyboards? I just saved your finger a 10-photo scrolling trip. Combine the oil with the sesame oil, pinch of salt, loads of pepper, chili powder (the hot version), dried thyme, ground ginger, brown sugar and garlic.   
Chicken Palava   

Mix it with the chicken and let it marinade for 15 minutes while you move on with the recipe.
Chicken Palava   

This is so hard-core! I steered clear from the prewashed stuff and bought fresh spinach at the market. Okay, so I was just testing my new salad spinner, but still. Wash and dry 1/2 a pound spinach. I tend to remove the long stalks because they freak out my kid. I prefer using the leaves whole, but you can give them a chop as well.  
Chicken Palava   

No need to add oil to the pan since the marinade contained oil. Cook the chicken until it loses its rawness and add the onion and bell pepper. Cook everything for 5 more minutes.   
Chicken Palava   

Spoon the peanut butter in there, pour in the chicken broth and add the tomatoes. Bring to a boil and simmer, over low heat, for 20 to 25 minutes without the lid on.   
Chicken Palava   

After 20 minutes the sauce will have cooked down and thickened a bit. Season with salt, pepper, chili powder and brown sugar to taste. Stir in the spinach and as soon as it wilts, turn off the heat. Told you it was a simple recipe.   
Chicken Palava   

This one covers all the bases: chicken, vegetables and peanut. How can it not be good? Serve with lots of rice, eat and be happy. Hakuna Matata!

Chicken Palava



Kay’s Recipe Card

Click here for printable size.

Chicken Palava
Ingredients
  • 1 pound chicken fillet
    1 pretty large onion
    1 large red bell pepper
    2 large garlic cloves
    2 big, juicy tomatoes
    1/2 pound fresh spinach
    4 tbsp (peanut) oil
    1 tsp sesame oil
    1/4 tsp chili powder (hot)
    1/2 tsp ground ginger
    2 tsp brown sugar
    1/2 tsp dried thyme”
    5 tbsp peanut butter
    2 cups chicken broth
    extra brown sugar
    pepper
    salt
Directions
  1. Dice the onion and bell pepper, grate the garlic and peel and dice the tomatoes. Cut the chicken into tiny cubes or strips. Combine the oil with the sesame oil, pinch of salt, loads of pepper, chili powder (the hot version), dried thyme, ground ginger, brown sugar and garlic, mix it with the chicken and let it marinade for 15 minutes while you move on with the recipe.

    Wash and dry 1/2 a pound spinach. Cook the chicken until it loses its rawness and add the onion and bell pepper. Cook everything for 5 more minutes. Spoon the peanut butter in there, pour in the chicken broth and add the tomatoes. Bring to a boil and simmer, over low heat, for 20 to 25 minutes without the lid on.

    After 20 minutes the sauce will have cooked down and thickened a bit. Season with salt, pepper, chili powder and brown sugar to taste. Stir in the spinach and as soon as it wilts, turn off the heat.
copyright © kayotickitchen.com

    © kayotic.com
    Click here to print recipes older than 2010
    e-mail this post to a friend


    73 Comments »

    1. 1

      This looks great. If you don’t have it already, I recommend that you seek out a recipe for a Thai dish called Massaman Curry – which I suspect you will also love!

      Nick on Feb 15, 2010 @ 12:00 pm Reply
    2. 2

      @Nick:

      This is the first time I’ve heard of it. Gonna look around for a recipe right now. Thanks for the tip!

      Kay on Feb 15, 2010 @ 1:22 pm Reply
    3. 3

      Oh, I have to make this for my sis and her hubby… they raved about the food they had when they went to Africa! This will be a nice surprise for them. And YAY for recipe card!

      Trish in MO on Feb 15, 2010 @ 3:48 pm Reply
    4. 4

      OH that looks so good. I have been following you for a while now, but don’t leave many comments. I appreciate all of your colorful choices of foods. Makes it very interesting and different.

      Debbie S on Feb 15, 2010 @ 4:01 pm Reply
    5. 5

      I don’t even like spinach but I have to try this! Thanks for sharing.

      Lisa on Feb 15, 2010 @ 5:02 pm Reply
    6. 6

      Looks yummy!
      Thanks for sharing Kay.

      PeachRainbow on Feb 15, 2010 @ 5:11 pm Reply
    7. 7

      This looks so good. Can’t wait to make it. Could I use fresh ginger instead?

      Maria on Feb 15, 2010 @ 5:13 pm Reply
    8. 8

      @Maria:

      Sure you can! I didn’t have any lying around or I would have used fresh as well. Don’t use too much, tho, or it’ll be overpowering.

      Kay on Feb 15, 2010 @ 5:18 pm Reply
    9. 9

      It looks yummy!!!!

      Lori on Feb 15, 2010 @ 5:49 pm Reply
    10. 10

      This looks lovely..Must try this, love peanuts with anything…You should try the massaman curry, its got lovely spices…

      Arch on Feb 15, 2010 @ 5:51 pm Reply
    11. 11

      I WILL try this. I live in the state of Georgia and we are number 1 in peanut production! Yay! I must tell you that I made your Hot Crash Orange Potatoes and that onion dish with cinnamon & ginger (sorry, can’t remember the name!) and that dinner made my son RAISE HIS EYEBROWS! Wow, my house SMELLED divine! Thanks!

      Kay Guest on Feb 15, 2010 @ 6:09 pm Reply
    12. 12

      I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, your photos belong in a cook book.

      Karly on Feb 15, 2010 @ 8:18 pm Reply
    13. 13

      Wow, looks great and reminds me a lot of a dish from the Philippines called kare-kare (pronounced ka-reh ka-reh). I’m part filipino so I grew up eating this and is among my favorites. Typically, the meat used is ox-tail and it’s boiled until tender. Peanut butter is the highlight of this stew as it creates a rich, creamy sauce. The veggies used include, onions, eggplant, long beans and some type of leafy green.

      Your dish looks fab, as usual!

      Jean on Feb 15, 2010 @ 9:34 pm Reply
    14. 14

      Loveeeeeeee it. The colours and textures look divine. Stunning photo collages too. Prachtig……

      Kitchen Butterfly on Feb 15, 2010 @ 9:47 pm Reply
    15. 15

      Practig recept! Looks delish, and love the photo collages too. Inspired.

      Kitchen Butterfly on Feb 15, 2010 @ 9:48 pm Reply
    16. 16

      I just looovee your blog, I am from Monterrey Mexico. So I was wondering why don’t you try some mexican food?. Thank you!!

      Rocio on Feb 16, 2010 @ 2:15 am Reply
    17. 17

      Making tomorrow – and I hope everyone loves it, because I too seriously love all things peanutty!

      elizabethk on Feb 16, 2010 @ 5:46 am Reply
    18. 18

      Hi!, it’s me again. I was thinking about making my cookbook, and I was wondering were did you get your template for your recipes??. Thank you

      Rocio on Feb 16, 2010 @ 8:49 am Reply
    19. 19

      @Rocio:

      I love Mexican food. But somehow I never seem to cook Mexican at home, I only eat it when I go to a restaurant. Not sure why.

      Gonna look online for some tried and true recipes!

      Kay on Feb 16, 2010 @ 8:54 am Reply
    20. 20

      That looks fantabulous!

      Marisa on Feb 16, 2010 @ 2:53 pm Reply
    21. 21

      I stumbled upon your site on foodphotoblog and love it! I can tell how much time and effort you put into your website, it is just amazing. I loved your recipe cards, which programs do you use for that template? I’d like to save ALL my recipes in that format. You rock!

      nihal on Feb 16, 2010 @ 4:33 pm Reply
    22. 22

      @Nihal:

      Thanks for the kind words, I appreciate them.

      I have no idea what foodphotoblog is! I use Photoshop for the recipe cards.

      Kay on Feb 16, 2010 @ 5:27 pm Reply
    23. 23

      Great recipe, Kay, made it tonight and everyone loved it. I substituted a little bit of sriracha sauce for the hot chili powder and I think that worked out great.

      Scott on Feb 17, 2010 @ 3:35 am Reply
    24. 24

      kay! this is so weird, I just made massaman curry tonight! Haha, I <3 peanuts too!

      Raj @ the hungry cook on Feb 17, 2010 @ 6:37 am Reply
    25. 25

      @Raj:

      I really have to look into this massaman curry thing, because I’ve never heard of it before!:)

      Kay on Feb 17, 2010 @ 11:58 am Reply

    RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

    Leave a comment