Lunch al desko: Chickpea, butternut squash and chorizo stew


imageThere’s still a serious chill in the air and, while a hot lunch doesn’t suit everyone, this is one of my go-to recipes for wintry weather. It’s the kind of food that ages well so a day or two after making it, this will be even tastier than the day you made it! I first had this in a tiny pub in Teguise, Lanzarote and it was so delicious I got the elderly man who served it up to write down the recipe for me. I’ve changed it a bit over the years but it’s always one of my absolute favourites. It’s a great lunchbox one but if you’re having it at home my favourite accompaniment is some crusty Arbutus bread, a nice Brie, and a good red wine!

What’s in it
One chorizo sausage (I use the Aldi spicy one)
Tin of chickpeas
Tin of tomatoes
1 small-ish butternut squash
3 cloves garlic
2 tsp cumin, toasted and ground
1 tsp cinnamon, ground
1 tsp coriander seeds, toasted and ground
1 dried birds eye chilli (or 1/2 tsp chilli flakes)
1/2 tsp oregano (optional)

Make it
– Preheat your oven to about 180C
– Peel and dice your butternut squash into 1cm chunks. (You need a really good knife for this)
– Chop the chorizo into 1cm rounds and then half or quarter those (depends on how chunky you like it. In a hot oven-proof saucepan, fry the chorizo in a small amount of oil until its oils are released and it’s slightly crisp.
– Add in the cumin, cinnamon and coriander along with the chilli.
– Peel your garlic and put in the oven to roast.
– Add in the butternut squash to the saucepan and coat in the chorizo oil and spices. Cook for 5 minutes.
– Remove the garlic from the oven – it should be nice and soft- and crush into your saucepan, mixing well into the butternut squash and chorizo.
– Add your tin of tomatoes and mix well. If it’s a little dry looking add some water at this stage (add half a tin to begin and you can add more as you go along). Add the oregano, if using (oregano is quite strong and not everybody likes it!)
– Cover your pot and put it into the preheated oven. It depends how big you’ve cut your butternut squash, this can take up to 90 minutes to cook, so keep an eye on it. If it looks too dry, add some more water. Add the tinned chickpeas when you’re a few minutes away from serving – add them too early and they go to mush.

If you use this recipe, I’d love to know how you get on with it! (Sorry about the lack of pics… I’ll stick one up later…)

 

 

 

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