22 September 2012

Smoked Paprika Chicken with Haricot Tarbais & Chorizo


There is something unique about Italy and women's surnames.   We keep our surnames for life.  There's no need to be on the temporary position and wait for Mr. Right to arrive then erase the identity that we inherited from our fathers.  So, when Mr. Right arrives, there's no need to be Signora Right too.  I can be Signora What-Have-You like how my father passed on his last name to me.

At the beginning, I was not agreeable to it.  I felt lost in a sea of married women changing their surnames.  I felt like a solitary fish sticking out from the schools swimming around me.  What's my name?  I grew up knowing fully well that I would be assuming my husband's last name.   I didn't and I still remained with my maiden name until now.  My family thought that there is something wrong with our marriage.  My grandmother was convinced that we never got married.  After explaining to them a hundred times how the system works in Italy, I finally saw a light of comprehension when I showed my mother the intercom buttons and mailboxes in Italy.  Almost all of them have two surnames listed in each house.  Sometimes, show and tell works best.

I only use my husband's last name in non-official things that I do.  I did not feel like explaining to ALL my friends why I am still using my maiden name because outside Italy (Is there another country like Italy?), it only means one thing - I never got married.  I can do what the rest of the married female population in Italy is doing.  Just use the surname my father gave me and consider myself lucky for not losing the name I was identified with ever since I was born.

I had a very peculiar day once.  Having just arrived from a vacation at the beginning of summer, I found a couple of notices for unclaimed mails at our mailbox.  Claiming them had been difficult, almost laughable (But not during the time I was claiming them!).  Both senders referred to me by my husband's last name.  The package of haricot tarbais & piment d'espelette from my friend in France even had my nickname on it.  Nicknames are almost non-existent in Italy.  In the eyes of the post office personnel, I was not the one on the receiving end of the package.    After a bit of deliberation, they handed me the package. The other mail was trickier to retrieve, being more official.  After producing a third valid document, I finally got my mail.   That day, I was not happy with my name.


This was my second approach to cooking the haricot tarbais (tarbais beans).  The first recipe was a basic bean soup with some speck.   It was good but I wasn't able to document it with pictures and written recipe. This, on the other hand, came out quite good.  I did study some recipes from the site of haricot tarbais itself to understand these beans then I just put together something on my own.  My family loved it.  Maybe you would too.   And to my French friend, this recipe's for you.  Thank you for sending me these haricot tarbais and the piment d'espelette.

Have a good weekend!



Smoked Paprika Chicken with Chorizo & Haricot Tarbais (Tarbais Beans)

Ingredients:
Serves 4
  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon piment d'espelette (espelette pepper) (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
  •  dash of pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 200 g. haricot tarbait (tarbait beans) or any similar beans
  • 75 g. smoked pancetta, cubed
  • 2 rosemary twigs
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 small onion, chopped finely
  • 1 garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 liter chicken stock + more for extra
  • 8 cherry tomatoes
  • 100 g. chorizo
Directions:
  1. Soak tarbais beans overnight in a bowl of water.  After soaking, drain, discard water and rinse.
  2. Mix smoked paprika, piment d'espelette, salt & pepper in a small bowl.   Rub chicken with the mixture.  Let it sit for an hour.
  3. Saute' onion, garlic, pancetta & chorizo in a tall saucepan with extra virgin olive oil.  Be careful not to burn the onion.  When pancetta and chorizo are toasted, add tomatoes.  Discard garlic when toasted.  Cook for another 3 minutes.  Add beans, stock, bay leaves & rosemary.  Bring to a boil then simmer for an hour to one hour and a half.  Add hot water or more chicken stock if beans are starting to dry up.  After about 45 minutes of cooking, add salt if needed.
  4. Meanwhile, brown both sides of the chicken in a saucepan with extra virgin olive oil.  Set aside.
  5. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celcius.  
  6. When chicken thighs are brown and beans are tender, put them together in a large baking pan and cook for 45 minutes.  Check while cooking.  If it's becoming dry, ladle some more chicken stock. 
  7. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil before serving.





23 comments:

  1. This looks so yummy, Weng! I really don't like beans (except our pork & beans in cans), but this does give you the appetite! You should submit it to the Tarbais Beans website to add to their recipes. I'm sure my husband would love this. Glad you liked it!

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    1. I'll check how to submit the recipe Makis. I hope you get to cook it at home. It's very tasty!

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  2. Btw, next time I'll send you a package, or a card, I'll make sure to address it to your single name :)

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    1. Yes please! Or they will send it back to you. :-)

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  3. My sister kept her name--there was never any doubt in her mind that she would while I always fully expected to take my husband's name. I didn't know that about Italy. Crazy what you had to go through to receive your packages but what you created with them makes it worth it. Talk about a perfect dish for fall. The chicken and beans together are perfection!

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    1. It's strange to be still called with my maiden name when I also fully expected to assume my husband's name. I never knew about this Italian law until I myself got married! :-) Thanks Jean!

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  4. Indeed, there is no other place like Italy! I've heard of all the different containers that must be used for recycling... perhaps that would be a fun story to share in a future post! :)

    What a scrumptious dish, I like the idea of the smoked paprika chicken and beans are the perfect accompaniment!

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    1. Every region, even community has different ways of segregating the recyclable trash. I never saw it your way. Maybe it is interesting. I think the most containers I have seen are in Switzerland. There was about a dozen to choose from and so many instructions to follow! LOL!

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  5. The colors in this dish are gorgeous, and I can just smell the smokey paprika! Wonderful photos.

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  6. That chicken looks delicious and the beans look great! Lovely job as usual!

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  7. Beans and smoked paprika: of course I love the recipe :) ! Shall try it step by step too!! Now; I have been married twice: for the first, there was no Q that I would use my husband's surname! Two decades later, my second husband-to-be actually asked in front of others: 'Will you adopt my name? I would love it if you did!' and I went 'What???? Of course!' Since then a number of close girlfriends have not and do have the two names on the PO box!! I see their point, especially as some are quite famous under their previous names. Me: have been 'partnering' and now live on my own, but, somewhow, if I decided on the open promise and the ring, I kind'of would like the name too! Even if considered eternally old-fashioned :) !

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    1. It is still a part of the marriage package, isn't it? I am old-fashioned too since I have this strange feeling of longing to assume my husband's name. :-) I hope you'll like this one. Thanks!

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  8. Haha, that was a fun post Weng. I never thought of NOT changing my surname because I guess it's normal for us to change family name when you "married into" husband's family. Marriage is still "family" matter in Japan, and it still has the sense of "giving away daughter" to husband's family... kinda thing. I'm not sure how many young people try to keep their last name, but I think it's like less than 5%? I don't know anyone who actually does it, or even question about if they want to keep their last name... Unfortunately Japan doesn't allow having middle name, so you really can keep one name each - first and last. I remember my Spanish teacher (in Japan) told me about her long name which doesn't fit in the form when she married to her Japanese husband. Anyway you made me think. :) Beans and smoked paprika with chorizo! Wish I can eat that for lunch!

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    1. Every country does have a different way in dealing with last names. In the Philippines, middle names are used and when I became Italian, had to take away that name too. It was a confusing stage! There are no middle names here too. It took me years to correct all the names in my documents. :-) Thanks Nami!

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  9. I know, I still get surprised looks when visiting the States and telling people in Italy, of all places they gasp!, we keep our maiden names. My mother still thinks I am being a "feminist". And then, when my Italian friends see me receiving mail from the US with Mr and Mrs and my husbands FIRST and LAST name on the envelope, they look at me like me people are even weirder! Love these beans, will definitely try them.

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    1. That is way to address to a married woman that I am accustomed to. MRS. plus husband's first and last name. We totally lose our identity! LOL! Both ways, I'm fine with them. They're just names after all. :-)

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  10. Those beans simply made my mouth water! Love the combination of flavors you put together. I actually use my maiden name - it is who I am. Not quite sure why women need to change their identity? Just my thought. Smile. I adore and love my hubby, just think that tradition is a bit outdated. Pinning these beans!!!

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    1. I think you are the first person I know who actually chose to use your maiden name Lisa. That's wonderful! I, on the other hand, am on the old-fashioned side so I am sort of stuck whether I like to keep my maiden name or not. I do both ways. Unofficially, I use mine and my husband's and officially, I have to use mine. Thanks Lisa! These beans came out well. I loved them!

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  11. I've chose not to change my name. And my husband doesn't mind it either :)

    Love the flavors you have going on in this recipe!

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    1. Nice to know that there are women who really choose to keep their names and to have husbands who respect that decision. Thanks Kiran!

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  12. Ugh, changing the surname or not changing is not something I want to think about. I got weird looks and a halted "Ah??" when people noticed I didn't change my name. But in Singapore, we don't adopt the husband name. Unless we want to see a lawyer and get it officially done, it will appear as Ms. So and so (aka MRS xyz). It's so weird. I think my mother in law is still shocked that I didn't adopt her son's surname.
    Having said that, I live abroad following my husband's job. So obviously all paperwork is done under name Mrs xyz and every single time, we have to revert them back to my maiden name and get teased by being a liberal feminist.

    Btw, your chicken and haricot look amazing! I just had lunch and I immediately feel hungry looking at this. Must make this in near future.

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