Sunday, 21 September 2014

Chorizo & Chickpea Stew

I’m pretty sure that I bought a bag of chickpeas specifically to make this which of course does lengthen the cooking time somewhat making it more of a weekend than weeknight meal (unless of course you cook in advance). In all honesty I don’t think much would be lost by using a decent tin of chickpeas and a lot of time would be saved.

I made this with chorizo and sherry to give it a Spanish edge but you could also try merguez sausages and red wine or even a good quality English sausage with white wine or cider. Some nice buttered chunky or crusty bread alongside is a perfect accompaniment.

Chorizo & Chickpea Stew
serves 3

150g dried chickpeas, soaked in cold water overnight
olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 stick of celery, finely chopped
2 carrots, peeled & finely diced
2 sprigs of thyme
1 tbsp tomato purée
small tin chopped tomatoes
100ml sherry
250ml chicken stock
200g cooking chorizo, cut into chunks
½ tbsp dried chilli flakes
small handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Drain and rinse the soaked chickpeas and set aside.

Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a saucepan and add the onion, half the garlic, the celery and carrots. Cook over a fairly low heat until the veg are softened then add the tomato purée, thyme and tinned tomatoes and cook for a minute more.

Pour in the sherry and let bubble for a couple of minutes to reduce then add the chickpeas and stock. Top up with a further 500ml of water so that the chickpeas are covered and bring to a boil.

Turn the heat down and then simmer on a low heat for 1½-2 hours or until the chickpeas are soft. Keep checking the water and add more if it looks like the chickpeas are drying out.

In a frying pan heat a little more oil and add the sausage, browning all over. Tip the sausages in with the chickpeas, cover and cook for 20 minutes or so. Take off the lid and simmer so that the sauce has thickened and then carefully check the seasoning and stir through the chopped parsley.

Meanwhile add extra olive oil to the now red oil in the saucepan in which you browned the chorizo, to make up 2-3 tbsp. Scatter in the chilli flakes and remaining garlic and warm over a very low heat until the garlic has softened and turned golden (but be very careful not to let it burn!).

Serve the stew in shallow bowls with the garlic chilli oil drizzled over.

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