Guiso de Gambas, Chorizo y Garbanzos
Originating from the Middle East, chickpeas have long been a mainstay of the Spanish diet since their introduction by the Carthaginians some 2250 years ago. Today they are widely cultivated and appear in many regional stews such as ‘cocido Madrileño’ and ‘puchero Andaluz’. Whilst chickpea dishes are often brought to life by ingredients such as chorizo, spinach and paprika, others use seafood such as clams, mussels, squid or octopus. This particular recipe combines both chorizo and prawns to create a surprisingly tasty dish.
Cooked chickpeas are available in jars in every Spanish supermarket which allow the home cook to easily prepare fast and healthy meals. Restaurant chefs will insist on using the finest dried chickpeas in their dishes which are grown in the likes of Fuentesaúco in Castilla y León. These legumes must be soaked overnight in water then simmered slowly for several hours before being combined with other ingredients.
The quantities listed below will provide 4 main courses, 6 starters or about 12 tapas.
Serves 4 people
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium red pepper, cut into 2cm squares
- 1 small onion – finely chopped
- 150g chorizo, sliced into 1/2 cm slices
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons of sherry or white wine
- 600g of cooked chickpeas – from a tin or freshly cooked
- 100ml chicken stock – you can either use chicken stock you have prepared or a stock cube
- 70g spinach – washed
- 24 large raw prawns, peeled, deveined and heads removed
- basil leaves – chopped
- salt and freshly ground pepper
To de-head, peel and de-vein the prawns you should hold the prawn tightly just below the head in one hand and twist and pull the head off with the other hand. Then peel it and to de-vein you can either cut open the back of the prawn and scrap the vein out or try to get a hold of it from the head end and gently pull it out.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large frying pan or saucepan and add the peppers, onion and chorizo. Cook over a medium heat for about 5 minutes then add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Be very careful not to burn the garlic. Add the sherry or wine and the vinegar and reduce down for a few minutes.
Add the chickpeas and basil, stir well and cook for 3 or 4 minutes then add the chicken stock, bring to the boil and simmer for about 10 minutes.
Heat the remaining oil in another frying pan and fry the prawns on a medium heat for about 45 seconds on each side. Then add them and the spinach to the stew and cook for a couple of minutes until the spinach has wilted and mixed in to the stew.
Season and sprinkle the chopped basil leaves over the top.
Serve with crusty bread.