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February 13, 2019

CHICKEN AND SHRIMP MOZAMBIQUE WITH FRIED POTATOES

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Tender chicken, succulent shrimp, and crispy fried potato chunks served in a spicy, garlicky, buttery, and saffron infused Mozambique sauce is a sinfully delicious meal. Serve with crusty bread to sop up all the goodness, this Portuguese dish is what my dreams are made of!

Chicken and Shrimp Mozambique with Fried Potatoes
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The best place to experience good Portuguese/Azorean cooking is Southeastern Massachusetts. I have ties to the New Bedford, Fall River area of the state and make trips there regularly. One of the best things in this region, besides ocean fresh seafood, is the access to fantastic Portuguese food. Some of my favorite pulled pork sandwiches, bread, and desserts come from there.

I recently had one of the most satisfying meals at a Portuguese restaurant in New Bedford. After trying just one bite, I knew I had to recreate it at home. The dish was served in a Mozambique style sauce which is spicy, garlicky, buttery, and luscious! It had chunks of tender chicken and succulent shrimp. I have had both shrimp and chicken Mozambique at other restaurants, and while they were all very delicious, what sets this particular one apart was the addition of crispy fried potatoes chunks! I had the meal with Portuguese rolls to sop up all luxurious sauce. It was divine!!!

Chicken and Shrimp Mozambique with Fried Potatoes



Upon testing out the recipe, I soon discovered the two secrets for a fabulous Mozambique sauce: lots of butter and sazón which is a seasoning blend used in Spanish and Latin cooking. I use Sazón Goya which is available in several different variations. Look for Sazón Goya con Azafrán if you want to make this recipe. It contains annato, Mexican saffron, and turmeric for flavor and color.



One thing I do want to mention—this product contains MSG. As a general rule, I avoid MSG in my cooking. But I made exceptions for this dish because the flavor is just like the one at the restaurant. It's so dang good!! I hate to admit it, but the MSG adds that special ooomph that enhances the flavor. If you want to avoid it altogether, I found links here and here for making your own sazón blend without the additive. Or look for other brands without MSG.


Chicken and Shrimp Mozambique with Fried Potatoes



Whenever I have saffron on hand. I like to add a pinch to the sauce. It adds a wonderfully subtle floral note. Adding this spice is entirely optional. I assure you the sauce is still fantastic without it!

Not a fan of heat? Don't let the description of the sauce turn you off. The beauty of this dish is you can make it as mild or spicy as you like. I use a popular Portuguese chili sauce called peri-peri. It has a nice heat and a bit of tang. Peri-peri (also priri-piri) sauce might not be available where you live. Feel free to substitute with your favorite hot sauce. 


Chicken and Shrimp Mozambique with Fried Potatoes


I like using dry white wine for the broth. Although the alcohol cooks out, substitute with chicken broth for an entirely alcohol free option. Another alternative to wine is beer. I have not tried it, but it sounds pretty tasty! That's going be something for me to explore the next time I make this dish!


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CHICKEN AND SHRIMP MOZAMBIQUE WITH FRIED POTATOES  

Chicken and Shrimp Mozambique with Fried Potatoes


INGREDIENTS:

1 stick unsalted butter, cut into large chunks
1 pound boneless chicken breast, cut into bite size pieces
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 medium onion chopped
6 cloves garlic
2 packets Sazón Goya con Azafrán
1 pinch of saffron, optional
1 pound (26/30 count) shrimp, peeled or divined with shell on and patted dry
2 cups wine (I like dry white)
2 tablespoons peri-peri (start out with less and add more to taste, if needed)
Parsley and or lemon for garnish, optional

For the Fried Potatoes:
1 1/2 pound russet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dices
Vegetable oil for frying
dash of salt



INSTRUCTIONS:

For the potatoes: Cover potato with water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Par cook for about 6 minutes. Potato should be tender but not falling apart. Drain. Spread on kitchen towel or paper towels to dry.

To fry.  Heat 1-inch of oil in a medium saucepan to 360 degrees F. Fry potatoes in 3 batches for until golden brown, about 6-7 minutes. Place on paper towel to drain. Sprinkle with salt. Keep warm in low in a 200 degree F oven, if needed.

Add 2 tablespoons oil to  a large skillet on medium high heat. Add chicken. Season with salt and pepper. Saute for 3- 4 minutes until chicken is lightly golden on all sides. Remove from pan. Chicken will not be cooked through.

Reduce heat to medium. Add butter to melt. Add onion and garlic. Cook until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in Sazón and peri-peri sauce. Pour in wine. Add chicken and shrimp to skillet. Cover and simmer for 5 to 7 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and shrimp is pink and cooked through. 

To serve, top with fried potatoes. Garnish is parsley and/or lemon, optional. Serve with side of crusty bread.

Makes 2 full servings or 4 half size. 



Recipe Notes:

  • Boiling the potatoes prior to frying brings out the starch for extra crispiness.
  • Substitute wine with beer or chicken broth
  • Cooking the shrimp shell-on or peeled off is a matter of personal preference. Shell-on shrimp will impart more flavor to the broth. Use peeled shrimp for ease of eating.
  • For a slightly lighter version, substitute a portion of the butter with the same amount of olive oil.
  • Larger or smaller shrimp will cook at different rates. Adjust cooking time accordingly.






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2 comments:

  1. This is so our kind of meal, Thao!! I love jambalaya and this kind of reminds me of that! Have a great weekend, my friend

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    Replies
    1. I get what you mean. There are similarities. In both cases there are a mixture of protein and lots carbs; and both are full of flavor—always a winning combo! You have a wonderful weekend to, dear. :)

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