This is the first installment of what I hope will become a weekly feature: Ingredient of the Week. There are a bunch of ingredients that are not everyday fare, but are in frequent use in my kitchen. This is where I'll share them.
Tonight's ingredient is Spanish Smoked Paprika. I love this stuff. The smoky flavor is definitely there, but it's subtle enough to allow the rich, sweet flavor of the paprika to shine through. I find myself choosing this over the standard Hungarian paprika almost every time I need some of the red stuff in a recipe.
For dinner tonight, I made chicken breasts rubbed with my special spice blend and then roasted in the oven. The spice blend consists of kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, garlic powder and smoked paprika. It's outrageously simple and outrageously good. We eat chicken flavored this way pretty much once a week in the summer, but on the grill instead of in the oven. Here is the finished product (confession: I ate the crispy, salt skin off of two breasts since Dylan didn't want any. Oh my God, was that good):
Another great use for this paprika is on potatoes. I cut Yukon Golds into skinny wedges and toss them into a Ziploc with olive oil, salt, freshly ground black pepper and a healthy dose of the smoked paprika. You can let these sit for a while - I often toss them in the fridge to marinate all day. They get kind of translucent and discolored, but very tender. When I'm ready to cook them, I put them pointy side up in a roasting pan and bake them at about 400 degrees until they are crispy and brown - 35 to 40 minutes.