I think this has to be the tastiest chickpea dish I have ever made, and I can’t wait to make it again. Slightly spicy with loads of flavour, it makes a fabulous tapas for three or four people. I love to serve this with a good dollop of creme fraiche and a few sprigs of fresh coriander. It sort of takes the flavours from a smokey Spanish vibe to that of Central America and Mexico. Scoop it onto slices of toasted baguette which adds crunch and mops up the juices.
Sherry is making a comeback on the worlds cocktail and bar scene with this retro drink becoming trendy again. The name Sherry is protected as a designation of origin fortified wine and is made only in the ‘sherry triangle’ made up of the three centres for Sherry making, Jerez de la Frontera, Sanlucar de Barrameda and El Puerto de Santa Maria which fall on the South Western coast of Spain. Sanlucar is on the Andalusian Atlantic coast where sea breezes are said to add to the tangy salt aromas and flavours of, particularly, a dry Sherry – which is why salty almonds, slices of jamon, chourizo and olives are such a perfect accompaniment.
Sherry is also having its turn in London restaurants like St John, owned and run by well-known nose-to-tail eating chef Fergus Henderson who refers to dry sherry as leaving the palate ‘almost perfectly clean’ and ‘it’s just one of those things that can give you a ‘lift’ in the day, and we’re all looking for those lifts.’
Sam and Samantha Clark of Casa Moro in London cook extensively with Sherry and refer to it as ‘wine’ when cooking. When they visited Cape Town for the Good Food and Wine Show, they presented some fabulous dishes where Sherry and olive oil made the perfect creamy emulsion sauce and their recommendation was to drink Sherry with their chilli prawn dish. They also loved the local Fino.
This quick and easy chickpea and chorizo casserole was delicious with a medium cream Monis fortified wine added to it and served with it, and I can’t wait to get stuck in and to use it more extensively in my cooking. It adds a phenomenal depth of flavour. Most of the ingredients are store cupboard staples too.
- 130g Chorizo, sliced
- 1T oilive oil
- 1/2 red onion, finely diced
- 1/2 red pepper, finely diced
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1/4 cup Monis Medium Cream
- 1 tin chopped tomatoes
- 2 tins chickpeas
- 2t brown sugar
- 1t smoked paprika
- 1/2t cumin
- Salt and Pepper to season
- creme fraiche to garnish (optional)
- fresh coriander leaves to garnish (optional)
- toasted baguette to serve
- Heat a large frying pan and fry the chorizo until the oils start releasing and the meat brows. Remove the sausage and set aside.
- Add the olive oil to the pan of orange oil and gently fry the onion for about 3 minutes until softened. add the red pepper and continue to fry for a further 2 or so minutes until they too are softened. Return the chorizo to the pan with the garlic and briefly fry.
- Add the Monis Medium Cream and allow the liquid to (mostly) cook off.
- Add the tomatoes, sugar, chickpeas, smoked paprika and cumin, and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Allow this to bubble on a gentle heat for about 20 minutes.
- Empty into a serving dish and garnish with creme fraiche and fresh coriander leaves
At the beginning of winter, I was commissioned by Monis to shoot a couple of their winter cocktails for publicity use so I’m sharing these images and the recipes below. The Sherry Posset is like eggnog, and the Pirates Breakfast is similar to an Irish coffee. Both extremely warming in these chilly days.
Posset is an Elizabethan dessert and I have turned it onto a hot sherry drink for winter. A bit like egg nog.
250g white sugar
250ml Monis Medium Cream
5 Egg yolks
Nutmeg for grating
In a sauce pan heat the sugar with the sherry, stirring to melt the sugar, remove from the heat when it starts to boil. In the meantime place the egg yolks in a separate bowl and whisk gently. In a further saucepan heat the milk to just boiling and whisk a small amount of it into the egg yolks. Slowly add the remaining milk. Return to the saucepan and cook over low heat until the mixture thickens. Remove from the heat and slowly stir in the sherry sugar mixture. Serve in heated glasses with a grating of nutmeg on top.
The Pirate’s Breakfast
This is a delicious drink made from hot coffee and if you are lucky to land some clotted cream from Robertson it would be perfect as the topping, though thick cream would be perfect.
60ml Monis Medium Cream
80ml hot coffee
1 tsp soft brown sugar
1 Tbs cream, clotted or thick cream
Heat an Irish coffee glass with just boiled hot water. Drain and pour in the sherry. Add the hot coffee and the sugar and stir well. Top with a heaped tablespoon of the cream.
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