paprika

Spanish sausage hotpot

Winter is a fabulous time for comfort foods, but not so fabulous for taking a picture of that food, so apologies for the poor quality of this photo and all photos from now until next summer.

Anyway, my local butcher has a wonderful selection of sausages and they are hard to beat taste wise. He does a spanish style sausage which has a lovely red hue and is imbued with paprika. To do this sausage justice I like to add it to a hot-pot flavoured with paprika and tomatoes.  This time I served it with plain boiled rice, but noodles, mash potato or cabbage would also be lovely as accompaniments.

6 spanish style sausages
1 onion, diced
1 yellow pepper, sliced
1 red chilli, chopped finely
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or crushed
1 tsp root ginger, chopped finely
5 ready to eat dried apricots, quartered
1 tsp paprika
1 400g tin of butter beans in water, undrained
1 400g tin of plum tomatoes

Method
Pour a tablespoon of oil into a large casserole dish and add the sausages and fry over a medium heat until the sausages are browned all over. I do this on the bottom of the roasting oven of the Aga. Add the onions and cook for a few minutes, then add the pepper, chilli, garlic and ginger and cook again for a few minutes more until everything is gently softened. Add the paprika and cook for a minute.  Then pour in the beans and the water they are in and give everything a good stir.  Add the tomatoes and the apricots and season with pepper.

Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 40 minutes to 1 hour until the sauce has reduced a little.  Check for seasoning and serve with something that will mop up the juices.

 

Lamb paprika with spiced rice

I haven’t shared a dinner with you for quite a while and there has been a very good reason for this.  A few weeks ago Chele at The Chocolate Teapot said she had lost her baking mojo (only temporarily, she soon found it again), well I seemed to have lost my making dinner mojo.  I burned quite a few things, some things I undercooked, some I just didn’t season right.  Poor old Mr OC, he has had to suffer some disappointing meals.

This is why I was so pleased when this dinner made from Sunday’s leftover lamb was so tasty.  I do hope my making dinner mojo is back for good! (And so does Mr OC).

For the Lamb paprika:

Cooked lamb (however much you have left from a roast, or put another way, enough for two greedy people)
1 onion, diced
1 red pepper, diced
5-6 fresh tomatoes or 1 tin of plum tomatoes
2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cumin seeds
½ tsp sugar (if you are using fresh English tomatoes)
salt and pepper

Method

If you are using fresh tomatoes, place them in boiling water for 1 minute, drain, allow to cool and then peel off the skin. Dice the tomatoes, keeping the juice.

Fry the onion and pepper in a little olive oil over a medium heat until the onion is translucent and the pepper is softened.  Add the cooked lamb and the paprika and cumin and cook for a few minutes, stirring all the while so that the spices don’t burn. Add the diced tomatoes and their juice or the tin of tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper and add the sugar if using fresh tomatoes.  Turn the heat down and simmer gently for 30-40 minutes until the tomatoes have cooked down and the juices have reduced to a pulpy sauce.  Whilst this is happening cook the spiced rice.

For the spiced rice: (generously serves 2)

200ml basmati rice
300ml water
25g butter
1 scant tsp salt
1-2 tsp cumin seed
5-6 cardamom pods
generous handful of raisins

Method

Measure the rice in a measuring jug and rinse several times with water and then leave to soak in a jugful of water for 30 minutes if you have time.

Melt the butter in a heavy based pan and add the cumin seeds and cardamom pods and cook for a minute, stirring all the time.  Drain the rice and add to the buttery spices, stirring carefully until coated with butter. Add 300ml of fresh water and the raisins and salt.  Stir once gently, cover with a tight-fitting lid, bring to a gentle simmer and simmer for 20 minutes.  Take off the heat, take off the lid and cover with a clean cloth and leave to stand for five minutes.  All of the water should have been absorbed and the rice will be perfectly cooked.

Serve the rice and the lamb and tuck in.  A spoonful or two of yoghurt wouldn’t go amiss.