Spanish cuisine is known for its bold flavors and rich spices, and no dish exemplifies this better than the classic Spanish chicken. From tender chicken thighs to crispy chicken breasts, this dish is a favorite for many. But no meal is complete without the perfect sides to compliment it. In this article, we’ll explore a variety of Spanish-inspired sides that are sure to elevate your chicken entree to new heights.
10 Classic Spanish Side Dishes That Pair Perfectly With Chicken
When it comes to pairing Spanish chicken with side dishes, there are a few classic combinations that always deliver. For starters, you can never go wrong with a fresh green salad. But the Spanish put their own spin on it by adding oranges, almonds, and olives to the mix. Another popular side is patatas bravas, or crispy fried potatoes, that are smothered in a thick and spicy tomato sauce. Other classic combinations include garlic roasted vegetables, chorizo stuffed mushrooms, and creamy white beans.
One lesser-known but equally delicious side dish is escalivada, a Catalan dish made from roasted eggplant, red peppers, and onions. The vegetables are then drizzled with olive oil and served at room temperature. Another classic Spanish side dish is gazpacho, a cold soup made from tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, and bread. It’s refreshing and perfect for hot summer days.
If you’re looking for something heartier, consider adding a side of paella to your Spanish chicken dish. Paella is a rice dish that’s typically made with saffron, chicken, and seafood. It’s a filling and flavorful side that’s sure to impress your dinner guests.
The Ultimate Guide to Pairing Wine with Spanish Chicken
Now that we’ve covered some classic side dish options, let’s talk about the ultimate companion for your Spanish chicken – wine. Red wines like Tempranillo and Rioja pair perfectly with the bold and spicy flavors of Spanish chicken. If you prefer white wines, try a crisp and refreshing Albariño or Verdejo. If you want to venture into the world of bubbly, a glass of Cava is a perfect choice.
It’s important to note that the cooking method of your Spanish chicken can also affect the wine pairing. If you’re grilling or roasting your chicken, a full-bodied red wine like a Garnacha or Monastrell can complement the smoky flavors. On the other hand, if you’re preparing your chicken in a tomato-based sauce, a medium-bodied red wine like a Tempranillo or Sangiovese can balance out the acidity. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different wine pairings to find your perfect match!
5 Easy-to-Make Salads that Compliment Spanish Chicken
If you’re in the mood for something light and refreshing, consider one of these five easy-to-make salads that perfectly compliment the flavors of Spanish chicken. A sweet and tangy mango salad is a perfect contrast to smoky and spicy chicken, while a savory bread salad with tomatoes and olives adds a Mediterranean touch. For something a little different, try a roasted beet and goat cheese salad, a bright and refreshing cucumber and radish salad, or a classic Caprese salad with fresh mozzarella and basil.
When it comes to pairing salads with Spanish chicken, it’s important to consider the dressing as well. A citrus vinaigrette or a honey mustard dressing can add a nice balance of sweet and tangy flavors to the dish. Additionally, adding some toasted nuts or seeds, such as almonds or pumpkin seeds, can provide a satisfying crunch to the salad. Experiment with different combinations to find the perfect salad to accompany your Spanish chicken dish.
How to Make Traditional Spanish Rice to Accompany Your Chicken Dish
No Spanish meal is complete without the addition of rice, and Spanish chicken is no exception. Learn how to make traditional Spanish rice with ingredients like saffron, tomatoes, and garlic. This aromatic and flavorful rice is the perfect accompaniment to your bold and spicy chicken dish.
To start making traditional Spanish rice, you will need to heat up some olive oil in a large skillet. Once the oil is hot, add in some diced onions and cook them until they become translucent. Then, add in some diced tomatoes and minced garlic and cook for a few more minutes until the tomatoes start to break down.
Next, add in your rice and stir it around until it is coated in the tomato and onion mixture. Then, add in some chicken broth and a pinch of saffron and bring the mixture to a boil. Once it is boiling, reduce the heat to low and cover the skillet with a lid. Let the rice cook for about 20 minutes, or until all of the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender.
Healthy and Delicious Vegetable Sides for Your Spanish Chicken Meal
If you’re looking for something healthy and delicious to serve alongside your Spanish chicken, try one of these vegetable sides. Grilled asparagus with a squeeze of lemon is a light and refreshing choice, while roasted Brussels sprouts add a hearty and satisfying crunch to your meal. For something a little different, why not try grilled eggplant with a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar, or a simple sautéed vegetable medley.
Adding a side of vegetables to your meal not only adds flavor and nutrition, but it also helps to balance out the richness of the Spanish chicken. Some other great options to consider include roasted sweet potatoes with a sprinkle of cinnamon, sautéed kale with garlic and lemon, or a colorful salad with mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, and sliced avocado. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different flavors and textures to find the perfect vegetable side for your Spanish chicken meal.
Simple Appetizers That Will Impress Your Dinner Guests Before Your Main Course Arrives
If you want to impress your dinner guests before you serve up your Spanish chicken, try one of these simple and delicious appetizers. Garlic shrimp served with crusty bread is a classic Spanish choice, while chorizo and manchego cheese skewers add a fun and flavorful touch to your meal. For a fresh and light option, try grilled zucchini with a dollop of goat cheese and a sprinkle of herbs.
Another great option for a simple and impressive appetizer is bruschetta. Toasted bread topped with fresh tomatoes, basil, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar is a crowd-pleaser. For a more exotic twist, try Vietnamese spring rolls filled with shrimp, herbs, and vermicelli noodles. These light and refreshing rolls are perfect for a summer dinner party. No matter which appetizer you choose, your guests will be impressed by your culinary skills and eagerly anticipate the main course.
The Best Bread Options for Sopping up All That Delicious Spanish Sauce
If you’re serving a saucy Spanish chicken dish, you’ll want some bread to sop it all up. From classic baguettes to crispy flatbreads, there are a variety of bread options that pair perfectly with Spanish cuisine. Try serving your chicken with a side of crusty garlic bread, or opt for a simple yet satisfying Pan con Tomate.
Another great option for sopping up Spanish sauce is a traditional Spanish bread called Sobao Pasiego. This bread is made with butter and eggs, giving it a rich and slightly sweet flavor that complements the savory flavors of Spanish cuisine. Its soft and fluffy texture makes it perfect for soaking up all the delicious sauce on your plate. You can find Sobao Pasiego at specialty food stores or online, and it’s definitely worth trying if you want to take your Spanish meal to the next level.
Creative Garnishes and Toppings to Elevate Your Spanish Chicken Dish
If you want to take your Spanish chicken to the next level, consider some creative garnishes and toppings. Chimichurri sauce adds a fresh and herbaceous touch, while a sprinkle of pine nuts adds a satisfying crunch. Try serving your chicken over a bed of shaved fennel and citrus, or garnish with a dollop of homemade aioli.
Another great way to elevate your Spanish chicken dish is by adding some roasted red peppers. They add a sweet and smoky flavor that pairs perfectly with the chicken. You can also try topping your chicken with some crumbled feta cheese for a tangy and salty kick.
If you want to add some heat to your dish, consider adding some sliced jalapenos or a drizzle of hot sauce. This will give your chicken a spicy kick that will wake up your taste buds. Another option is to add some sliced avocado for a creamy and rich addition to your dish.
Quick and Easy Desserts that Pair Well with Your Savory Spanish Chicken Entrée
To cap off your Spanish-inspired meal, try one of these quick and easy dessert options. A classic Flan or Tarta de Santiago will satisfy your sweet tooth without overwhelming your palate. Or, try a light and refreshing citrus salad, or a plate of warm churros dusted with cinnamon sugar. Serve your dessert with a glass of sweet and nutty sherry or a cup of rich and creamy Spanish coffee to round out the meal.
In conclusion, the perfect side dishes to pair with your Spanish chicken dish are entirely dependent on your personal preferences. Whether you opt for creamy beans, fresh salad toppings, or saucy rice, there’s no denying that these dishes are the perfect complement to your flavorful Spanish chicken.
For those who prefer a more decadent dessert, try a slice of Pastel de Tres Leches. This sponge cake is soaked in a mixture of three different types of milk, giving it a rich and creamy texture. Top it off with a dollop of whipped cream and fresh berries for a beautiful and delicious presentation.
If you’re looking for a dessert that’s a bit lighter, try a bowl of Arroz con Leche. This creamy rice pudding is flavored with cinnamon and vanilla, and can be served warm or chilled. It’s the perfect way to end a meal on a sweet and comforting note.