Remember, some time ago I spoke about "Farofa Amarela"? Well, the dish I am presenting here tastes great when eaten together with this very special manioc condiment.
"Xinxim De Galinha" is a wonderful dish originating from the Northeast of Brazil, Bahia more exactly. It is very typical of that area, because the people there love to combine seafood with meat.
As it is the case with most Bahian culinary specialities, this dish takes it's roots in West Africa (for more infos, please click here). The food there is very colorful, tasty, spicy and it has the reputation of being the most famous and the best of Brazil's regional cusines!
This "Moqueca" (see my "Moqueca Da Peixe") or stew is extremely pleasant, exotic and unique. The aromas are well-balanced, it has a very round and soft taste, yet it is a real shock to the tastebuds, because it's multiple layers of flavor have a firework effect on your palate! "Xinxim De Galinha" is a heavenly and supmtuous speciality that brings together the earth and the sea in a beautiful way. The natural sweetness of chicken and shrimps goes hand in hand to create an interesting impression on the gourmet in search of unusual associations.
"Xinxim De Galinha" works like magic on your soul as it has the power to soothe you and make you dream! It is one of those dishes that is always able to surprise you, no matter how many times you eat it, because it's flavor is so complex and rich that it is impossible to put a grip on it. A real explosion of taste, a symphony of flavors!...
This recipe was adapted from Michael Bateman's "Café Brazil" that my friend, the sweet Brigitte at "Café Créole" (Guyana) ever so kindly sent me. A marvelous gift for a foodie like me! Thanks.
Bring some sunshine to your table and into your life!!!
800g Chicken thighs
3 Limes, juiced (+ 1 more if needed)
4 Cloves garlic, crushed with a knife and finely chopped
Sea salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
250g Raw jumbo shrimps, shelled
Sunflower/peanut oil, for frying
1 Big onion, finely sliced
1 Green bell pepper, seeded and cut in tiny cubes
2 Big tomatoes, peeled, seeded and thinly sliced
250ml Chicken broth
30g Dried shrimps (see remarks)
30g Brazil/cashew nuts
30g Toasted peanuts, without the skin
A 1cm (2.50 inches) piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
2 Tbs Dendê/palm oil (see info)
400ml Thickish coconut milk
Some fresh coriander
1. Put the chicken thighs in a bowl and add 1/3 of the lime juice and 1/3 of the garlic. Salt and pepper to taste.
2. Mix all the marinade ingredients together and set aside for 1 hour.
3. In another bowl, mix together half of the jumbo shrimps, the leftover lime juice and half of the leftover garlic. Salt and pepper to taste.
4. Let marinade for about 15 minutes.
5. Heat a frying pan over high heat, then add 1 tablespoon sunflower/peanut oil.
6. Remove the shrimps from the marinade and stir-fry for about 1 minute.
7. Set aside.
8. Remove the chicken thighs from the marinade.
9. Add a little more sunflower/peanut oil in the frying pan and fry the thighs until golden on both sides, about 5 minutes per side.
10. Set aside.
11. In a clean frying pan, add some Sunflower/peanut oil and fry the onion, until translucid.
12. Add the bell pepper, then the leftover garlic and stir-fry for 1 minute.
13. Add the tomatoes and the chicken. Heat well.
14. Pour the chicken broth into the pan and bring to the boil.
15. Then, over low heat, simmer, covered for about 30 minutes.
16. In a mortar, grind together the dried shrimps, Brazil nuts and peanuts into a very fine meal.
17. Incorporate this fine meal, the leftover marinade juices as well as the grated ginger to the chicken and sauce in the pan.
18. Let the contents of the pan simmer for another 5 minutes.
19. Check the seasoning and correct if desired.
20. Now, add the fresh/raw shrimps, the extra lime juice (if needed/desired), the "Dendê Oil" and the coconut milk. Mix well.
21. Let it all simmer for another 5-10 minutes.
22. Serve hot sprinkled with chopped coriander.
As it might be difficult to find Brazilian dried shrimps, the Asian or Cajun version will also do (see info).
Keep the juices of the marinade for later. It will be incorporated at the end.
Don't let the onion or the bell pepper get brown.
While simmering, check that the meat doesn't stick to the pan or that the broth hasn't reduced too much. If it's the case, add a little water.
If you don't have a mortar, then use you mixer.
I didn't grate my ginger. Instead I pound it in my mortar.
At the end when everything is mixed together, you might want to add more lime juice (the extra lime).
Eat this dish with white rice (carolina, basmati or creole rice), "Farofa" (see recipe), Vatapa (see info) and hot tomato salsa.
(Pelourinho -Pic by Joao Eduardo Penny De Carvahlo www.trekearth.com)
(Mundai Beach -Pic by Eddie Lima www.trekearth.com)