I’ve still got Barcelona on the mind! I keep meaning to get to Bar Pinotxo at La Boqueria to try their famous chickpea dishes (usually with morcilla, a Spanish black sausage, and raisins or apple) but I’ve never been able to wake myself up early enough (I’m under the impression that it’s less crowded early in the morning). We had some leftover chickpeas one night and the thought sprung to my mind to create a similar dish at home.

Chickpeas with Sausage, Raisins and Pine Nuts

This recipe is based on this video I found which shows one of the cooks at Bar Pinotxo preparing the dish. I’ve had to tweak it somewhat to use ingredients that I can easily get here and of course, I have no idea how mine compares to the real thing. One thing I do know – it’s mighty tasty with the creamy chickpeas and savoury pork mingling with the sweet raisins and nutty pine nuts and a bowlful makes a fine supper with a small hunk of bread alongside.

Chickpeas with Sausage, Raisins and Pine Nuts
serves 2-3.

2 tbsps olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 pork sausages
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup pinenuts
1 tsp dried oregano
a pinch of dried thyme
1-2 tbsps chopped flat leaf parsley
500g cooked chickpeas
2 tsps balsamic vinegar
2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil

Heat a large saute pan over medium heat and pour in the oil when hot. Add the onions and cook them slowly until golden, about 10 minutes.

Peel the sausages and add the filling to the pan. Add the raisins, pine nuts, oregano and thyme in too. Fry, stirring and mashing the meat constantly – you want the meat to crumble to little bits. When the meat has cooked through, add the parsley and stir through. If it’s starting to look a bit too dry, you can toss in a bit of water at this time (a bit only!).

Add the chickpeas and stir to combine well. Let cook for another 5 or so minutes, stirring often. The chickpeas are precooked so you just want to heat them up here. When hot, take the pan off the heat, season with salt and pour in the balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil. Stir through well and serve.

Fresh Chickpeas

On a somewhat related note, I purchased these fresh chickpeas at a shop on Ealing Road near Wembley this past weekend. I wasn’t too sure how to prepare them so I boiled them for a few minutes, as I would edamame. Unlike edamame though, there are only one or two chickpeas per pod.

Fresh Chickpea

The pods collected lots of water and with a gentle squeeze, they’d shoot out jets of hot water. Sure it was a bit dangerous but we were rewarded with tender green chickpeas that made for a nice pre-dinner nibble.