Yes, you!That's what happened. Kids I tell ya! Remember going out on a Friday night straight from work? You'd hit Fouquets and dine on their shared platter, eating a mozarella stick or onion ring for every martini drunk, heading home to change at 9pm to go to a club and falling into a coma like sleep about 3am. Rising at noon, you'd head out to the local cafe for brunch and watch the world go by in large, dark glasses long before such a thing was trendy....no little dogs in large bags in Glasgow.....then stroll home through the park, napping on the sofa until dinner time and then spending an hour getting ready with the radio blaring and doing it all over again, with the addition of the Sunday papers this time and a huge fry up rather than Saturday's croissant.
This weekend was spent, amongst other things, entertaining, birthday celebrating Happy Birthday, Heather, my lovely little niece, swimming and bear shopping. On Friday, we had friends come over...10 adults and 11 kids; there are times when I realise my optimism doesn't always overcome the space I have although gin does.....but we settled in to our limited space and enjoyed the night.
yes, that was a water jug I used and a big, fat, ungainly, cartoon like chocolate cake.
The kids helped; the messier looking, the better they said....
It was all fine and served fairly hot although I've discovered that the temperature to heat up beef stew and chicken and chorizo casserole should definitely be different. Next time, one in a pot, one in the oven.
My lovely Irish bloggy friend, Mise had a giveaway. Having never won anything or having been told not to enter as Scotland is too far too post we do have airmail ya know...it might be in the form of pigeons but it still gets here....I was incredibly surprised and delighted to win a lovely tea cosy from the amazing peeps at Mabel and Violet. This stuff is seriously lovely and the website, moreish! Thank you, Mise, Mabel and Violet; I love it, the kids love it, husband thinks it's a bit mental and my friend tried to steal it no-one's seen her for days...... All of which are good. Now, if you could make a Helen cosy, I'd sure appreciate it.....
Kelly pouring me some funky tea!
Kelly wanted mash cakes and peas so we gave her The McGinn Family to scoff.
The kids made oat and choccy chip cookies! Well done, kids....sorry there are none left.....
Farmhouse Chicken and Chorizo Casserole
When I made this dish, I added the chorizo at the end because I couldn't get one at the time; I recommend cooking it with the stew to intensify the flavour and so that the chorizo is as tender as the chicken. Adding it at the end was nice but it was still chewy and the oil didn't have the same chance to ooze out, coating everything in sight...always a good thing with chorizo. Any spicy or not spicy sausage could be used. I also make it without the chorizo as a cheap and tasty family dish.
I also recommend doubling up on the quantities; this freezes beautifully.
Oven 200oC, 400oF, Gas 6.
1.5kg/3lb chicken pieces (I use thighs, skin removed but use whatever you prefer)
1 whole chorizo sausage, sliced half an inch thick.
Seasoned flour, approx. 4 tablespoons
1-2 crushed cloves of garlic
600ml/1 pt chicken stock
2 tablespoons tomato puree (mixed into stock)
1 tablespoon veg oil
Selection of root veg; turnip, parsnip, carrot, diced
4 small onions, roughly chopped or 8 shallots whole.
3 slices of bacon, chopped
8 new baby potatoes, quartered or 4 Maris Piper, cut into eight.
Salt, freshly ground black pepper, chopped parsley (fresh)
Toss chicken in flour to cook, brown in pan with melted butter over a medium heat and transfer to a casserole dish. Throw in sliced chorizo, toss around the pan for a moment and add to chicken. Remove with a slotted spoon so that the remaining butter and chorizo oil remain. Add garlic to pan and leftover flour, cook over low heat for a minute, stirring all the time and then remove from heat and slowly add stock and puree mix. Put back in heat, stirring constantly until mixture boils and thickens. Pour over chicken and chorizo. Cover and bake for 30 minutes.
Browned and covered with sauce
Heat the oil in a pan and cook root veg over a medium heat for a few minutes; remove onto a plate and add onions and bacon to the pan. Cook until the bacon is crisp. Take chicken dish from oven and add in the root veg, the onions and bacon alongside the uncooked potatoes, black pepper and parsley.
Veg and parsley added
Cover and bake for a further 40 minutes. If making dumplings, add them in 15 minutes before the end. This is great to serve immediately or leave in the fridge to be reheated the next day. Excellent dish if people coming over and time is limited.