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Chorizo and chick pea casserole


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This casserole combines three store cupboard staples - dried chorizo with canned chick peas and tomatoes. It is easy to make and improves if it is kept for a day and reheated.

In common with many other sausage casseroles, a ham hock or pigs trotter will do wonders for the taste of this dish. Most of us are squeamish about the 'nasty bits'. If you can overcome these feelings you will be rewarded by a stew with depth of flavour and a rich, savoury taste. Once the dish is cooked you can either throw the trotter away or take the meat off the bones and add to the stew - depending on how squeamish you are!

The trotter should be fairly clean, it may have a few hairs, and these can be scrapped away or singed with a gas flame. You can cook the trotter whole but will extract more flavour if it is split down the middle first. The butcher will do this for you.

Ingredients
200 g dried chorizo, peeled and sliced into thick coins
A few pork sausages, skinned and crumbled (optional)
Pigs trotter (ask the butcher to clean and split this for you) or a ham hock
2 cans of chickpeas, drained
Large can of chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Large onion, sliced into rings
Pinch of sweet paprika (optional)
Salt and black pepper

Method

Heat some olive oil in a large casserole, add the trotter and brown for 10 minutes
Add the onion rings and cook until softened, add the chorizo coins and any other sausage meat
Cook gently for a further 10 minutes, add the wine vinegar, tomatoes and chick peas
If you are using a ham hock add this now
Cover and gently simmer for 1 hour
Taste and adjust seasoning - you may not need any salt if you have used a ham hock
Remove the trotter/ham hock, remove meat and return to the pan
Serve with crusty bread and a green salad

Suggested Sausages

Dried chorizo and any plain pork sausages you have hanging around



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