From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...The rain here has stopped but the river is running high and the chill, as you walk along its banks, is pervasive. While we are a hearty lot, these old joints balk as the damp seeps in and they will stiffen until they feel the releasing warmth of a set fire. It is definitely a stew or soup day, and I have a wonderful one to share with you tonight. The Silver Fox and I first had this stew in Grenada at a restaurant that was obviously a popular local haunt. The stew was as delicious then as it is now, but unfortunately, save for a small bite, only the Silver Fox will get to enjoy it this evening. I'm beginning a yearly ritual that starts on the 1st of December, and for the next few weeks, I'll be living on a diet of yogurt, oatmeal and spinach. It's Christmas diet time and the goal here is to lose 5 pounds before the holiday, so I can gain 5 pounds during the holiday and still fit in my clothes come the 1st of January. It may not be the best or most sensible way to get from here to there, but it works for me and I can tell you that over the last 5 decades I've lost 250 pounds. It happens to be the same 5 pounds lost 50 times, but I'm counting on those of you who love me to view it as Sisyphean and give me a high five or fist bump for perseverance, if for nothing else. Those of you who are not dieting will love the robust, stick-to-the-ribs flavor of this homely and comforting stew. The recipe comes from Jose Pizzaro and he is a master of regional dishes of this sort. In Spain, his stew would be served with bread, an iceberg salad, French fries and copious quantities of red wine. If you are looking for a new stew recipe, I heartily recommend this one to you. Do give it a try. Here is how the stew is made.
Braised Pork and Chorizo Stew with Tomatoes and Olives...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Jose Pizarro
2-1/4 pounds boned shoulder of pork, cut into 1-1/4-inch chunks
4 tablespoons Olive Oil
2/3 cup red wine
2 medium onions, chopped
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
7 ounces chorizo sausage, skinned and chopped
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
2 tablespoons tomato paste
14 ounces skinned, chopped tomatoes, fresh or canned
1-1/4 cups chicken stock
3 large thyme sprigs, leaves only
2 tablespoons chopped fresh marjoram or oregano
4 fresh bay leaves
3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
2 teaspoons superfine sugar
3-1/2 ounces good quality pitted black olives
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1) Season pork with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large, flameproof casserole, and sear pork in batches until nicely browned. Set aside in a bowl.
2) Add wine to pan, and as liquid bubbles up, scrape base of pan with a wooden spoon to release all caramelized juices. Pour over pork.
3) Add remaining oil to pan with onions, cover and fry gently for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are very soft and lightly browned. Add garlic and chorizo, and fry for another 2–3 minutes.
4) Stir in paprika and cook for 1 minute, then add tomato paste, tomatoes, chicken stock, thyme leaves, marjoram or oregano, and bay leaves.
5) Stir in pork and accumulated juices, season with salt and pepper, cover, and simmer gently for 1 hour until pork is almost tender.
6) Put sherry vinegar and superfine sugar into a small pan, and boil until reduced to about 1 teaspoon. Stir it into casserole with olives and simmer, uncovered, for another 20–30 minutes until sauce is nicely reduced and pork is tender.
7) Adjust seasoning to taste, and to be authentic serve with French fries. Yield: 4 to 6 servings.
One Year Ago Today: Two Years Ago Today:Cratchet's Christmas Cake Pecan Streusel Coffee Cake
Three Years Ago Today: Four Years Ago Today:Baked Indian Pudding Pasta with Pesto and Peas