Thursday, April 17, 2008

chickpea stew

Last night made Chickpea stew. I was trying to emulate a Spanish style stew similar to what I had in Barcelona. Not exactly the same, but very good.

The recipe here has been tweaked based on what I learned from the 1st time making it.

Chickpea Stew with Chorizo
Serves 4

2 tbsp olive oil
1 large carrot, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1 large onion, diced
1/3 cup red pepper, diced
6-8 cloves garlic
1 bay leaf
2 tsp sweet Spanish paprika
1 tbsp kosher salt
2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1 can (15oz) diced tomatoes, pulsed in a blender
2 cans chickpeas, rinsed
~2 cups chicken stock
8oz chorizo (preferred), whole pieces; subsititute smoked sausage or kielbasa
8oz uncooked shrimp, deveined
Cilantro to garnish

In dutch oven over high heat, heat olive oil. Cook carrot, celery, onion and red pepper for about 5 minutes, until softened. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add spices and cook for 30 seconds more. Add tomatoes, chickpeas, chorizo and chicken stock to cover. Bring to a simmer, and reduce heat to medium low. Cook for 20-25 minutes, uncovered. Add shrimp and cook for a couple minutes until shrimp just begin to curl. Adjust seasonings, garnish with cilantro and maybe some olive oil or truffle oil, and serve in bowls.

Monday, April 14, 2008

limoncello and other liqueur projects

About 2 months ago I started a Meyer Lemon limoncello (zested lemons & 750mL of Everclear 151). Within about 1 week, the color was a beautiful, clear, brilliant yellow.

Over the weekend I did the 2nd stage: strain out zest, make simple syrup (2 cups sugar to 2 cups water), add lemon juice. Now let it sit for 2 more months. Filled it in a 1.5L bottle of Skyy Vodka. We'll see how it turns out.

For the future I will try:

1. Using good bottled water
2. Filtering using filter paper
3. The Brita filter technique from "LimoncelloQuest"

I had more 151 left over, so I decided to use part of it on an improvised "krupnikas". Added dashes of cinammon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, whole coriander, whole black pepper, a 1-inch piece of vanilla bean, a tiny splash of vanilla extract, and about 2-3 tbsp. of leftover zest from the limoncello. Can't wait to see how that turns out.