I have a love-hate relationship with chorizo. I love the fact that it's peppery. I love the fact that it's - almost - a reasonable substitute for pepperoni on a pizza. I hate the fact that it's greasy and has that weird unreal red color. (Come to think of it, if I were still cooking back in the US I would probably have the same love-hate relationship with pepperoni.) I am in a constant quest to find a nice chorizo that will have a lower than average fat content and a higher than average heat. This means that whenever we make home-made pizzas I have left-over chorizo. I always buy two different ones, in the hope that one will transport me back to Giordano's Pizza in Chicaog.
They never do.
But it means I often have leftover chorizo in the fridge.
And so I decided to try to use it in a spicy chicken stew. And I think I found a good use for leftover chorizo: spicy and chewy and - somewhat - less fatty than usual. Chicken and chorizo stew.
You can slice a chorizo thinly and serve it uncooked. The spices have essentially "cooked" the sausage and all you need to do is slice and eat it, relishing the pepper flavor and chewy texture. But if you are going to cook it anyway, you would do well to cook it first...and drain off the fat. I think that is what makes this dish worthwhile. You have the chorizo flavor and depth but only about half the fat. Given the fact that it's half fat, that's already a good start.
Chorizo and chicken stew
3/4 cup (or about 10 cm) chorizo, cubed
2 chicken breasts, cut in bite-sized pieces
1/2 cup or one small tin of sweet corn
1 large onion, roughly chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 Tbs oregano
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp spicy paprika or cayenne pepper
a drizzle of olive oil
1 jar tomato sauce/2-3 chopped tomatoes
Put a little olive oil in a deep frying pan and heat it over a fairly high flame. Add the chorizo and onions and cook until the onions are soft and the chorizos have given up a serious amount of grease. Pour off the grease and add the garlic and chicken. Allow the chicken to brown a bit before turning. When they are browned on all sides, deglaze the pan with a few tablespoons of water, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the spices and allow to cook for a few minutes. Add the tomato sauce and corn and let simmer for ten minutes or so, while you make some brown rice.
Serve over brown rice with a hearty red wine or a nice cold beer. It's a very meaty dish and will not be appreciated by my vegetarian co-bloggers. But it hits the spot on a cold night and is simple and quick to make.