Last night we just couldn't decide what to have for dinner, so we went with a selection of our favourites - a sort-of tapas, if you will. It was a feast and perfectly suited our indecision. We had five small plates in the end; roasted sweet potato with aioli, meatballs in a spicy tomato sauce, chorizo and black bean dip, roasted vegetables, and aubergine with honey. We won't share all the recipes right now (that might take a while!) just the chorizo and black bean dip.
Now, dip might give the wrong impression as it's not the easiest thing to scoop onto a crisp. We find it suits a range of occasions, we've served it at parties with tortilla chips but we've also had it as part of a meal. The recipe is quite straightforward. Fry 225g chorizo cut into small chunks in a little oil until crisp. Remove from the pan but leave the juices behind. In the same pan cook off an onion and a carrot both finely chopped. Cook these for about 8 minutes until soft then add in 2 crushed cloves garlic and 1 finely chopped red pepper. Cook for another two minutes then remove from the heat. Stir in 1tbsp honey and 1tsp smoked paprika and leave for a moment. Crush a can of black beans (we use a potato masher on a chopping board) then stir this into your vegetables along with the chorizo and about 100g grated Lactofree mature cheese. Transfer into an oven-proof dish, cover, and cook at 180C for around 25 minutes. Serve with fresh coriander and more grated cheese if you like.
Oh, while we're at it, the aubergines with honey are a real treat! It sounds a little odd but works so well, we discovered them last year on a menu in Richmond, South London and just had to give them a go. Thinly slice 1 aubergine and coat in flour. Lightly fry (this will require a reasonable amount of oil) then drizzle with honey. Eat quickly while they are still hot, they taste amazing!