Chorizo and Bean Stew

Something spicy for at least 2 greedy people and some left over!

  • I Chorizo sausage, chopped into 2cm chunks (can be diagonal if you feel like it)
  • 4 pork spare ribs, roasted in hot oven with salt and pepper until cooked (20 mins or longer as necessary),
  • 2 tins cannellini beans, opened (!)
  • 2 onions, peeled and sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled, crushed and chopped
  • 1 tin of tomatoes, opened (!)
  • 4 fresh tomatoes, skinned, de-seeded and quartered
  • 2 tbspns tomato puree
  • 2 glasses of basic red wine
  • 1 bunch of thyme, parsley and bay, tied together with some cotton.
  • Large handful of fresh white breadcrumbs OR use one or two pitta bread (white or brown, torn into small bits) if that’s all you’ve got and just whizz in a grinder/chopper.


Method

The idea is to layer beans and meaty, onion/tomato mixture in an earthenware or cast iron pot: 3 layers of beans and two of mixture, ending in beans with a breadcrumb top.

So – in a big/deep pan, fry the onions until soft in some olive oil. Add the chorizo and fry ‘til the red (paprika) juices flow. Add the garlic, tomatoes and red wine. Simmer,  until reduced. This intensifies the flavours. Remove from the heat.

Put one third of the beans in the cooking pot. Then place two ribs and half the chorizo mixture on top, then more beans, then the other two ribs and the rest of the chorizo mixture, finishing with the last of the beans.

Push the bunch of herbs into the middle of the mixture, leaving the stalks just sticking out for removal, later. Add boiling water (with an organic chicken stock cube if you want extra flavour/salt) to just under the top of the mixture.

Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the top. Put the lid on the pot and bring to the boil on the top of the oven. Then place in a simmering oven (300F ‘ish) for at least 1½ hours. It should come out thickened and smelling wonderful with the crumb top having absorbed some juices and gone brown and a bit crispy. If it isn’t, take the lid off and cook a little longer in a hotter oven, just to finish it off – but take care there are still enough of the juices in the stew to keep it moist.

This stew can be left in a low oven for a good few hours (the crust just gets crispier) or can be made the day before and re-heated. Absolutely delicious with loads of dressed, green salad and a good strong bread to mop up the juices.

Clearly can also feed more than two people!

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