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Chicken, Chorizo and Squash Stew

The last couple of days have been really dreich (as my dear Scottish Mum would have exclaimed). Skies the colour of dishwater, a continuous damp drizzle that isn't proper rain, but without an umbrella still manages to soak you through, and whipping winds that render an umbrella useless anyway. Urgh. Our recent ten day break staying in a tiny fishing village in South Corfu (sea water gently slapping the shore was about as loud as it got, and we spent our days guzzling freshly caught seafood and quaffing wine - bliss) seems so far away now. It's almost dark at six, the heating is on and so are the layers of jumpers. Now is not the time for grilling salmon and serving with a crisp salad, but more for the transition into proper belly-warming grub. This dish is very easy to make, inexpensive and is light-ish. Also fairly healthy so no need to feel guilty if you have an enormous portion (or three, as Gregor is wont to do)

To feed four (or in our case two)

4 large chicken thighs - we buy (very reasonably priced) meat from the brilliant MeatN16

3 chorizo - the uncooked variety

1 large onion - finely chopped

1 400g tin of chopped tomatoes

1 400g tin of chickpeas

3 generous handfuls of squash chopped into large chunks (I used Red Kuri squash but any squash or pumpkin would do - or, indeed, any starchy vegetable would work)

500ml chicken stock (or water will be fine)

Couple of teaspoons of smoked paprika (optional)

Teaspoon of turmeric (optional)

Couple of teaspoons of fenugreek seeds (optional)

A generous glug of Gregor's Dressing and Marinade (but I would say that - it's fine without if you dinnae have any)

A leek, 3 cloves of garlic, 3 red chillis (all chopped) and a glass of white wine - are all optional though I like a bit of chilli heat in my stews. If you opt for wine add less stock/water.



I cooked the stew in a slow cooker but you can easily do it in any ol' casserole dish in the oven so you don't need to fry stuff off first, necessarily. I just wanted to get everything going before I put in the slow cooker as I left it kind of late in the day.

In a big non-stick frying pan brown the chicken pieces so they are nice and caramelised all over. Remove and put to one side. In the fat that is left in the pan sweat off your onion, leeks and garlic then add the chorizo (chopped in big-ish chunks). Once the oil leaks out of the sausages bung the chopped squash in and cook until it takes on a bit of colour. Next add the spices and chilli and cook off for a couple of minutes. Once it starts to dry out a little add the wine (if using), then allow to evaporate, then add in the tin of tomatoes. If not using wine bung in the tomatoes at this point, along with a splash of water.












Onions, leeks, spices and chorizo getting 'browned off'.

Bring to an excited simmer then transfer to the slow cooker (or if you are doing it in a regular casserole just turn it down). Put your chicken thighs back in and pour in your stock or water, glug of 'Gregor's' and stir. Cook in the oven at 180 for 1 1/2 hours regular cooker - or high 3 hours slow cooker.  Half way through the cooking add the tin of (rinsed) chickpeas. Towards the end of cooking remove the lid and reduce to a consistency you like.

We had this with fresh bread to soak up the juices and a load of greens (kale, cavalo nero and sprouting broccolli stirred fired with ginger). Yum!