Posts Tagged ‘Chorizo’

My favorite meal of the day?  Easy.  Breakfast.  I don’t recall if I’ve mentioned that before, but it’s worth repeating.  Going out for breakfast is– hands down–the best part of the day.  The morning is full of potential.  Full of promise.  Now my family may ridicule me and my Saturday morning “Time to get up and rock and roll!” mantra, but it’s the weekend and I’m ready to get out the door.  I have coffee shops to get to and patisseries to explore.  But–and I know I’ve mentioned this–the boys (Radd and Aanen) are incorrigible homebodies.  So Aria and I compromise on occassion.  And those weekend mornings that we stay home are pretty great too.  Especially when the breakfast is as delicious as this one.

You are looking at the amazing combination of chorizo sausage, fire-roasted tomatoes, smoked paprika, and poached eggs.  And yes, it tastes as wonderful as it looks.  I love this breakfast dish.  I love the tongue-tingling spice from the chorizo, the acidity of the fire-roasted tomatoes, the smoky complexity of the spices, and of course, those fantastic eggs.  Throw a dollop of harissa on top, and you have a show-stopper for breakfast or brunch.  This one has personality, in spades.

A few pointers on the ingredients:  if you don’t have all of the spices listed, don’t worry.  Use the ones from the recipe that you do have. However…I think you really will want to track down the smoked paprika.  It’s one of the keys to making this dish so tasty.  And, you will use it a lot more than you think in other recipes.  It’s that good.  For the meat, I used ground chorizo sausage.  I’m fortunate enough to live just a few blocks from an excellent co-op, and just a few miles from a year-round farmers’ market.  Both have vast selections of locally produced meats.  The chorizo I use is wonderfully spiced and perfectly salty.  I didn’t add one fleck of salt here.  If you can’t find ground chorizo, just use whatever type you can find.  Cut it into small pieces.  Like the smoked paprika, this dish relies on the unique flavors that it provides.

The Recipe: Chorizo and Fire-Roasted Tomato Ragout with Poached Eggs

(serves 4)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 pound ground chorizo

1/4 of a large white onion, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 tablespoon smoked paprika

1/4 teaspoon EACH of ground ginger, ground allspice, ground coriander, ground turmeric, and ground cinnamon

2 cans of fire-roasted tomatoes (preferably Muir Glen Organic)

6-8 large eggs (depending upon how many you want)

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

2 tablespoons harissa, optional

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat.  Add the chorizo and cook a few minutes until cooked through; drain the grease.  Add the onion and garlic to the pan of chorizo and sauté for 2-3 more minutes until softened.

Lower the heat and add all of the spices: smoked paprika, ginger, allspice, coriander, turmeric, and cinnamon.  Let them toast for about 30 seconds.  Add the tomatoes.  Turn the heat up to medium and cook until the mixture has thickened slightly, about 5 minutes.

Gently crack the eggs on top of the mixture, cover, and cook until the whites are set, but the yolk are still soft.  Sprinkle with cilantro and a drizzle of harissa before serving.  Enjoy with some crusty bread!

Adapted from a recipe by Food Blogger/Chef Emily C. Swantner of Epicurean Odyssey  via The Food 52 Cookbook by Amanda Hesser and Merril Stubbs

Hope you all have a lovely weekend!


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I have been craving steamed mussels for a few weeks now.  The culprit was a visit to our favorite gastropub a month or two ago, where we shared steamed mussels with sliced chorizo sausage and had a few local craft beers.  It was a good night.  I love seafood, but don’t get a chance to eat it as much as I’d like here in the Upper Midwest.  A week later, as if to taunt me, the most recent issue of ‘Fine Cooking’ had a steamed-mussel recipe that looked similar to what I’d recently loved while out on the town.  Then I saw another variation on this theme on her blog.  Obviously this was a sign, so I headed down to Coastal Seafoods to buy some shellfish.

No, this is not a “local” dish.  I wish it were.  But fresh walleye is about as close to local seafood as I’m going to get in Minnesota, and this dish definitely won’t work with fish.  Now, back to the mussels.  I can’t believe I don’t make these more often!  They turn an ordinary middle-of-the-week dinner into an exciting and new meal.  Did I mention that they’re incredibly easy to make?  That they taste amazing?  That they’re relatively inexpensive?  How about this:  the whole process– start to finish– takes less than 30 minutes.

The mussels flavor is best described as a “briny goodness.”  The chorizo adds a little spice and contrasting texture.  I chose ground chorizo specifically because of this textural variation– and because we have a local (Yay!) brand that competes for the best I’ve ever tasted.  You can certainly use a Spanish-style, rather than ground, chorizo if you’d like.  Just slice it up 3/8 -inch thick.   The ramps (see here for a discussion on ramps), garlic, and smoked paprika combine nicely with the chorizo.  The dish is completed with a a small amount of white wine.  I made this with a Spanish Albariño– it’ll never lead you astray when matching with seafood.  The dish tastes spicy and divine.  Serve it with the garlicky croutons, pour a glass of that delicious wine, and settle in on the patio for the night.

The Recipe:  Steamed Mussels with Chorizo, Ramps, and Smoked Paprika

Serves 2, generously

3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil

4 cloves garlic, 2 minced and 2 thinly sliced

1/2 bunch of ramps, chopped  (white and green parts, only)

1 cup dry white wine,  an Albariño worked nicely (though I’m intrigued by how a minerally wine, like a Sancerre or even Chablis would change the flavor)

1/2 teaspoon smoked sweet paprika

1/2 pound ground chorizo

1 teaspoon dried thyme (or 2 sprigs fresh)

2 pounds mussels, scrubbed and debearded

1 baguette, cut on the diagonal into 1/2-inch slices

Sea salt and cracked black pepper

Microgreens (for garnish, optional)

Combine the olive oil and the 2 cloves of minced garlic in a small bowl and set aside.

Position an oven rack about 4 inches from the broiler element and heat the broiler on high.

In a 6-quart Dutch oven, brown the chorizo until fully cooked.  There should be a bit of oil leftover from the chorizo in the pan, if not add a couple tablespoons of olive oil.  Add the garlic and ramps and saute along with the chorizo for just a few minutes, until soft.  Add the smoked paprika and cook for 30 seconds longer.  Add the wine and thyme and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.  Stir in the mussels, coating them with the sauce mixture.  Cover and cook, stirring 2 or 3 times, until the mussels have opened, 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, arrange the baguette slices in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and brush them with the garlic oil, dividing the bits of garlic evenly among the slices.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and then broil, rotating the baking sheet as needed, until evenly browned and crisp, 1 to 2 minutes.  Make as many as you like.

Discard any mussels that have not opened.  Serve the mussels with the sauce, croutons, and microgreens.  Enjoy!

Source:  Adapted from Fine Cooking Magazine

Make sure to come out and support the National Food Blogger Bake Sale on Saturday.  Proceeds to support Share Our Strength.  Our local gathering in Minneapolis/ St. Paul is at the Midtown Global Market –920 East Lake St. Minneapolis.  The hours are 11:00am – 4:00 pm.  Check to see if your city is having one.

Thanks again for stopping by– I appreciate all of your kind comments.  Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.


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