CEiMB: Chicken Paella with Sausage and Olives

If you follow me on twitter, you may remember that a few weeks ago I posted that I was overcoming my fear of fresh tomatoes by enjoying some straight from my mom’s garden. I chopped them up, drizzled some balsamic on them, and threw some fresh, chopped basil over top for good measure. The first bite was great, but by the time I had eaten three or four forkfuls, I was sorta over it. I am definitely working towards training my palate to enjoy new things, but it seems I’m going to need a bit more work when it comes to raw tomatoes.

With that in mind, I decided to forego this week’s CEiMB selection, hosted by Peggy of Pantry Revisited, because I just didn’t think I could enjoy a panzanella, which is a salad containing sliced bread, tomatoes, and seasonings. I did consider trying it because it sounds very fresh and flavorful, but when I realized that the part that sounded the best to me was the chicken sausage, I decided maybe I should pass. Instead, I traveled back in time a few weeks and made the paella recipe I missed when Margaret of Tea and Scones was hosting.

Even though I hate missing the chance to cook along with my CEiMB friends, sometimes making a recipe after everyone else can be helpful. For instance, it seems that this recipe was well-received but perhaps a little bland for some. I decided to make a slight adjustment by seasoning my chicken with salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika. I just sprinkled all the seasonings onto the chicken before browning it. I also added some cayenne to the pot while the sausage and chicken were browning. I was a little heavy-handed with the cayenne (by accident, because it sort of spilled out in a big clump – oops!), but the extra seasonings gave this dish a nice kick. The recipe was a little time-consuming but very easy to make, and I’ll definitely be making this one again.

Now, for a funny little story, let me tell you why I missed this the first time around. I was actually all set to make it, but this is back when I was ill so I didn’t end up being able to get to it. But, when I was planning on making it, I decided to read over the recipe to figure out what was involved. The first instruction is to preheat your oven, but I could not find where you ever bake anything. I read the recipe TWICE. I asked Ryan to read the recipe for me, too. Neither of us could see where it said to transfer the pot into the oven. I was seriously convinced that this was an error in the recipe until one of the other CEiMB girls pointed out the last couple of sentences. Whoops! Considering I was too medicated to even READ the recipe, I think it’s probably a good thing I didn’t try to COOK! Take my advice – follow the recipe and preheat your oven as instructed :)

The calorie count is a little high on this one at about 540 calories for my version, but the serving is a generous 2 cups. It’s very filling and satisfying so consider letting yourself splurge on this one! You could also use a spicy turkey sausage to save yourself some calories, but that may change the flavor profile somewhat.

Chicken Paella with Sausage and Olives

1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
4 ounces chorizo
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
5 oz frozen peas
1 cup uncooked white rice
1 tomato, chopped
1/4 cup green olives, sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 tsp ground turmeric
small pinch saffron threads

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Heat 1 T of oil in large heavy skillet over medium-high heat (use an ovenproof skillet that has a lid to cover). Add the chorizo and cook, stir occasionally until browned, about 3 minutes. Add the chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned about 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken and chorizo to a plate.

Heat the remaining 2 tsp of oil in the skillet. Add the onion, and cook stirring until softened about 3-5 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to cook for a minute more. Return the chicken and chorizo to the skillet. Add the chicken broth, peas, rice, tomato, olives, salt, pepper, turmeric, and saffron.

Bring to a boil, cover, and transfer to the oven. Cook until the rice appears to be tender and the liquid is absorbed about 30 minutes.

Source: Ellie Krieger’s “So Easy: Luscious, Healthy Recipes for Every Meal of the Week”, p. 183
4 servings | 11 POINTS

Just another reminder: To celebrate my blog’s new home, I’m giving away a copy of Martha Stewart’s newest cookbook! Go here and enter to win “Fresh Flavor Fast”: http://wp.me/sYIma-welcome The giveaway closes on Sunday, July 18, 2010 so don’t be late :)


July 15, 2010. recipes.


  1. Kayte replied:

    Funny about the oven part…sometimes I do stuff like that when I am not even ill! Your recipe looks great on a plate as they say…I am thinking, too, that the grilled chicken sausages from this week’s recipe would be great in the paella recipe. Either way, this one is a repeat for us as we all liked it. And you are right, who can eat 2 cups of this??? Well, the guys can, but I ate a cup and was satisfied.

  2. Joanne replied:

    I usually miss key parts of a recipe because I look at the ingredients only to decide if I’ll make it or not. So when it comes to the instructions, I might miss a point or two thinking I already know how to put it all together.
    The dish came out great though. Good for you Liz!

  3. Margaret replied:

    Thanks for going back and doing ‘my’ dish. We enjoyed it. We thot it was a little bland and I added quite a bit Tony’s seasoning. It was filling. Looks tasty.

  4. Peggy replied:

    I’m not going to take it personally that you didn’t try the recipe I chose this week. I certainly understand if you do not care for tomatoes as that was the main part of the dish! I have to skip all shellfish recipes unless I can substitute chicken somehow. It makes life interesting though, huh? I love your paella. It was a favorite as well of ours. Your photos are beautiful. Thank you for coming over to my blog this morning and leaving me that sweet message! Love cooking with you girl.

  5. Bri replied:

    I am just as averse to raw tomatoes as you are, but I did want to find a way to make the panzanella anyway. I gave my hubby raw cherry tomatoes in his, and I roasted some cherry tomatoes for mine. They were shriveled and slightly burst and I find that this is a great way for me to eat tomatoes. Glad you finally tried the paella; it was a hit for my household.

  6. Kelly replied:

    I regularly misread recipes, even if I am not medicated, so you’re not alone. I love, love, love Paella. I really need to make it sometime soon. Jambalaya is up there for me as well.

  7. Danica replied:

    I still giggle when I read about the oven part :D I am so guilty of it too. Delicious and I seriously NEED to make this again.

    I hate missing out on cooking too so maybe I will make up for missing your week by doing two recipes this week :)

  8. Elina (Healthy and Sane) replied:

    I based my dinner on this week’s CEiMB but didn’t make the panzanella. It sounded a bit weird to me too (although I love fresh tomatoes) – would the bread get soggy and gross? Sounded risky :)
    I don’t remember this paella recipe for some reason. I know I didn’t make it. Must add it to my list :D

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