Chorizo and ditalini pasta
Spanish food is always cooked with passion and served with love. The more I think about it, the more I realise that the dishes I often create to serve to my loved ones in bulk more often than not come from Spanish inspirations. There’s something about the deep, carnival-like colours and the bulky textures that really feeds the soul as well as the stomach.
But this kind of soul cherishing should not only be reserved for the feeding of others but should also be preserved for ones own enjoyment. While this meal can lend itself to a big, manor-table style feast, I also found enjoyment in it’s consumption whilst chilling on my own – bringing the carnival rompery from the soirees of Spain to the sofas of my City.
1. Slice a chorizo into pound sized slices, stacking the chorizo’s in fours and then slicing sideways to create a handful of ‘half-moon’ shapes before dropping into a heavy bottom pan and turning on to a medium heat.
2. No need for oil in this recipe as the chorizo contains natural oils, so allow it to express the paprika-esque juices into the pan
3. On the back hob, pour some ditalini into a big pan before crumbling a vegetable stock cube over it. Boil the kettle, turn the hob on to a medium heat and pour the boiling water over the pasta and stock mix – ditalini cooks fast due to it’s small build so a medium heat will eliminate the risk of over-cooking
4. Drain a can of white cannellini pieces and add to the pan of sizzling chorizo, turning with a wooden spoon so that it gathers the juices
5. While the two ingredients begin to join together, sprinkle in some sea salt and some dried oregano and a squeeze of tomato puree, turning with a spoon so that everything begins to cling together turning a rich red
6. Once the ditalini has bubbled away nicely and has cooked to a minute BEFORE it’s packet instructions, take a ladel full of the vegetable-infused cooking water and pour into the front pan of tomato-invigorated chorizo and beans
7. Open a can of chopped tomatoes and pour into the pan, mixing so that the contents has an oozy red soup like texture
8. Drain the ditalini over the sink – do not shake too much, there should still be a little cooking water still clinging to the pasta – and return to their original pan and back on the hob
9. Almost immediately, transfer the entire contents of the front hob into the pan containing the ditalini pasta and turn with a wooden spoon so that the two textures mix, creating a thick stew-like substance
10. Clamp a lid on and turn the heat down very low allowing everything to simmer for 20-30 minutes.
Once done, ladle yourself a nice big bowl full. In my glutton self I’d be lying when I said I didn’t mop up this meal with some bread HOWEVER, I do not recommend it to you for the meal itself is very thick and deliciously stodgy that bread is not necessary.
Just indulge in its simplicity and serve your soul the Spanish succour that it so deserves.