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Saturday, 22 October 2011

McCartney's Chorizo, Chicken & Bean Stew

Messy but completely delish!
McCartneys of Moira are going a dinger at the moment! First of all their Corned Beef beat 7,500 other entries to become the Great Taste Awards 2011 Supreme Champion, then they were named best Neighbourhood Retailer Butcher of the Year! But we knew that anyway! Their sausages are just the best thing ever and so cheap when you consider how delicious they are. I'd rather have a plate of McCartney's sausages (especially their Italian ones) than a supermarket steak any time.

I made a fantastic (even if I do say so myself) casserole for the weekend from McCartney's chorizo sausages, some chicken fillets, a few tins of beans and a tub of tomato sauce. These sausages aren't as strong as proper chorizo (they are more accurately chorizo flavoured) but they are full of garlic & paprika and perfect for a winter casserole. Incredibly easy and quick to do, this will keep us going through a busy weekend where my husband and I are doing a very accurate impression of ships that pass in the night. You can eat a bowl of it on its own or have some crusty bread and cheese on the side. I make a pretty damn good tomato sauce in industrial quantities once a month and freeze 400g or so batches of it, so that's what I used here. Use your own recipe or a supermarket one if you must, though I can't recommend one cos I think they are all awful.....if you can recommend a good one please let me know!

Chorizo, Chicken & Bean Stew
450g McCartney's Chorizo sausages (If you are not lucky enough to have McCartneys, use a premium pork sausage with a lot of garlic, paprika and spice in the mix) cut into bitesize chunks
450g chicken breast fillets cut into bitesize chunks
1 punnet chestnut mushrooms sliced
1 medium aubergine diced into 1/2" chunks
100g Kabanossi sausage sliced
1 tin chickpeas drained and washed
1 tin flageolet beans drained and washed
3-400g or so of tomato sauce (see recipe below)
1 tsp paprika
Oil for frying

Fry the mushrooms on high until caramelised and golden. Transfer to a large casserole. Do the same thing with the aubergine. Turn the heat down slightly to medium high heat. Fry the chorizo until golden and add to the casserole. Then do the same with the chicken. Put everything else (beans, kabanossi, tomato sauce) into the casserole, bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 45 mins.

My tomato sauce
2 x 500g cartons of passata (Tesco's 29p one is grand)
2-3 large onions
2-3 peppers (optional)
4-5 cloves of garlic
1 tsp sugar
1 bay leaf
1 tsp dried thyme or a few sprigs of fresh.

Put the peppers, onions & garlic in a food processor and whizz till finely chopped. Fry on a medium high heat till cooked through (30 mins?). Throw everything else in, bring to the boil, simmer on low for an hour or so, remove whole herbs, cool & freeze in batches (this makes 3 batches for me). If you make it without peppers it's stupidly cheap and tastes much better than any dirty oul thing out of a jar.

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