I’ve made us dinner.
Really. A whole two courses. And a drink. But you are going to have to wait until the end of the week before we have finished it. There isn’t a problem with that though, is there? I mean, it gives us time to pace ourselves. Allow everything to “go down” before we move on to the next thing. Okay?
I bet you’re wondering what could have prompted such coherent behaviour?
Well. Apparently it is some ‘Hallmark’ occasion on Saturday. A kind of “special day” and I thought maybe I should make an effort, given that this blog is a whole year older and therefore potentially wiser. Although I seriously doubt I will ever be called wise.
I usually use this auspicious occasion to lament my woes about said occasion but I realised that if I did that for the second year in a row you would begin to get the impression that I am a right misery guts. When that couldn’t be further from the truth.
I am, in all truthfulness, a real romantic at heart. Good old-fashioned romance, gets me every time. I love all those grand gestures, it’s just that I don’t think that they should be confined to one day a year. And the whole expectation that you should be doing something. Ugh. Just as bad as NYE.
Anyway, let’s get back to dinner.
There are so many things that I love about this dish: you can make it in one pot. You can make it ahead of time and simply reheat when required. It contains cinnamon, and my favourite beans – flageolet, as well as tomatoes (another favourite) and coriander (which you may be surprised to hear is my favourite herb. There are a lot of favourites going on here). It’s deliciously warming on a chilly winters day. You can eat it with your fingers. Kind of. Well, you can scoop it onto a tortilla chip, which is more or less the same thing in my book.
I know that beans may not be the most romantic of ingredients, especially if they make you a bit . . . er . . . give you . . . a-hem . . . produce an unfortunate side effect. If you are that way inclined maybe eat this stew with someone you know very, very well. Personally I am trying to eat more plant-based protein, so beans it had to be in order to make this a filling and satisfying meal.
Let’s move on.
To avocado cream.
This is so delicious – creamy avocado, lime juice (my favourite citrus) and a good pinch of sea salt. All blended together to make a fluffy, smooth cream that just finishes everything off.
I mean, just look at this:
Crunchy tortilla chip, warm tomato beany goodness, creamy avocado and a little fresh coriander. Texture heaven.
Of course you can serve this with rice, but I wanted something crunchy to add some texture and stop it being too soft, you know what I mean?
Also, this recipe makes enough for 4 people, which romantic dinner wise isn’t all that great, but you can freeze any left-overs.
I have this stashed away for lunches for the next week or so. Which makes me very happy. I love having things like this squirrelled away for easy, quick and tasty meals.
There is a lot of good things going on in this dish, not least a whole heap of a favourites. Which is what a Valentines Day (damn it, I actually mentioned the day) dinner should consist of.
For me, anyway.
Three Bean & Chorizo Stew with Avocado Cream
For the stew:
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 80g chorizo, diced into small pieces
- 1 red onion, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 2 large portabello mushrooms, chopped into smallish pieces
- 28g bunch of coriander, cut into stalks and leaves.
- 1 x 140g can of tomato puree
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp ground allspice
- 1 tsp soft brown sugar, or coconut sugar
- 1 x 400g can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 x 400g can flageolet beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 x 400g can butter beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes + 1 can of water
- 1 tsp sea salt
For the avocado cream:
- 1 small avocado
- Juice of 1 lime
- Good pinch of sea salt
- Place a heavy bottomed pan or cast iron casserole dish over a medium heat and add the olive oil. Once the oil is warm, add the chorizo and cook until it has darkened in colour and has released all of its oil (around 5 minutes).
- Add the onion and cook for another 5 minutes, until it has softened.
- Add the bell pepper and the garlic and again cook for 5 minutes, until the pepper has started to soften.
- Add the mushrooms and cook for a minute or two until they have softened a little (sorry there is a lot of ‘softening’ going on).
- Add the chopped coriander stalks, tomato puree, cinnamon, paprika, ground allspice and sugar and mix well before adding the beans, chopped tomatoes and water.
- Give everything a good stir and then bring to the boil, before covering with a lid, turning down the heat to low and leaving to simmer for 30 minutes or so. If doesn’t matter if it simmers for a bit longer, the flavours just need time to get to know each other.
- While the stew is simmering make the avocado cream by blended all the ingredients together in a small food processor until you get a smooth creamy paste. You may need to scrape the sides down occasionally.
- Once the stew is ready season to taste with sea salt and serve with the avocado cream and tortilla chips and a good scattering of the coriander leaves.
Store any left-over avocado cream and stew in air-tight containers in the fridge for no more than 2 days. The stew can be frozen once it has cooled completely.
© The Pink Rose Bakery 2015