Mozambique Chicken

Chicken, Ethnic, Gourmet Group, Poultry


4 ozs tamarind paste

1 1/2 cups boiling water

6 ozs dry white wine

hot pepper sauce to taste

2 teaspoons kosher salt

small bunch parsley

4 scallions sliced

4 lbs chicken thighs, skinless bone in

2 yellow onions minced

2 tablespoons butter

4 cloves garlic minced


This recipe is Brazilian: a great synthesis of things African and Portuguese, and it is easy to prepare. The simple ingredients complement each other and produce a rich, delicious, surprisingly complex sauce. (Recipe from an exclusive Brazilian spa.)


Dissolve the tamarind paste in boiling water to make a smooth puree, adding water as needed to reach the consistency of tomato sauce. Chop the parsley leaves, reserving stems, and set aside. Separate the scallion greens from the white parts. Leave the greens whole and chop the white parts. Set aside.
Mix the tamarind puree, white wine, hot pepper sauce to taste (go easy -– you can always add more later) and salt to make the marinade. Tie the parsley stems and scallions greens in a bunch (to make a bouquet garni) and add to the marinade. Pour the marinade over the chicken pieces, mix well, and let marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight, in the refrigerator. I recommend marinating overnight, if time allows.
Preheat oven to 325°F.
In a large frying pan, brown the grated onions and chopped white parts of the scallions in the butter. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Remove the bouquet garni from the chicken, add the chicken pieces to the onion/garlic/scallion mixture and mix well.
Arrange the chicken pieces in a single layer in a baking pan, and spoon the marinade over the chicken. Bake in a 325F oven, turning the chicken and basting from time to time to allow even browning, until the meat is tender and the sauce is nice and thick, approximately 50-60 minutes. If the sauce seems to be thickening too quickly, add a bit of chicken stock or water during the cooking, as needed.
Garnish with chopped parsley. Serve with additional hot pepper sauce on the side.