Cod with chorizo and tomato sauce is a light meal that is full of flavour. Perfect on a hot summer day.
Now the weather is getting warmer I am wanting to eat lighter meals. Winter is all about comfort food, summer is all about taste and flavours. Cod with chorizo and tomato sauce is a meal that is bursting with flavour but perfect for a hot summer day.
When I was a child the family used to go on holiday in France. We usually stayed in self catering accommodation in small villages and it was a great way to learn the French language and culture. We would often eat out in the local restaurants and were treated to the special menus which usually consisted of four courses. We would get a starter, main course, cheese course and dessert. The meal was usually ended with coffee.
A meal in a French restaurant is a leisurely affair, the food is there to be enjoyed and savoured. Even bed and breakfast places provided evening meals and these were always carefully cooked and tasty.
The one exception was when we stayed in a chateau for the night but that is another story. It was during these holidays I discovered a love for charcuterie. One of the starters we were often served in restaurants was a platter full of mixed meats, cheeses and other nibbles. There is something satisfying about eating cured meats and the different tastes and textures are incredible. Charcuterie differs from region to region as different recipes and curing methods are used. When the Carnivore Club got in touch and asked me if I wanted to try their subscription box I jumped at the chance.
Carnivore Club is a monthly subscription box which brings you the best charcuterie from across the UK. The box started in the US and Canada and has recently come to the UK. Every month you will receive 4 – 6 selected charcuterie products from a different artisan UK supplier. Carnivore Club is about satisfying your inner carnivore. You can get one box for £32 or sign up for a longer term subscription at £29 per month and you can cancel whenever you wish. The value of the products in the box comes to slightly more than this.
This month the supplier is Beal’s Farm in North Chailey, East Sussex. They make their charcuterie from Mangalitza pork which is a heritage rare breed pig. The meat is also known as the Kobe beef of Pork and the tastiest pork in the world. Inside my Carnivore Clube box I discovered five different meats, pancetta, air-dried ham, salami, lomo and spicy chorizo. They were all wrapped in shrink wrapped plastic to keep them fresh.
Each of these meats is made from different cuts of the pig and each of them has a wonderful flavour.
Panacetta is made from the belly and is dry cured, smoked and air dried. Panacetta is so useful for many dishes like these panacetta and parmesan scones.
Lomo was not a cut I had heard of, it is pork loin dry cured with herbs and spices then rubbed with paprika and left to air dry. It was delicious. Salami is a meat I am very familiar with. This one is made from the pork shoulder and mixed with garlic and black pepper using a traditional Spanish recipe. The air dried ham and chorizo were equally tasty. I decided to use some of the chorizo and make cod with chorizo and tomato sauce for dinner.
Beal’s Farm chrizo was perfect for this, made from pork leg and using the finest paprika it added a depth of flavour that perfectly complemented the cod.
Before I share the recipe I want to tell you a little bit about the Mangalitza pig. You may notice that the meat appears a little fatty. Modern pigs have been breed to be lean but breeding the fat out of the pig also takes away the flavour of the meat. Magalitza pigs are one of the oldest established animals in husbandry. They were domesticated over 8000 years ago in Asia and came to Europe from there. It is indigenous to Hungry. The pigs are wooly in appearance, looking a little like sheep and very much like a wild boar. In fact they are rather cute.
They were nearly lost to extinction in the 1990’s. They became established in Britain in 2006 when 17 pigs were brought back to the UK. All three breed lines, the Blonde. the Swallow Bellied and the Red are now recognised. The pigs thrive best in an outdoor environment and love to wander freely and forage for their food. I love the fact that these pigs are such an old breed, I can imagine our ancestors keeping them.
Chorizo is a meat I love to use in cooking, it adds a lovely flavour to a dish. If you are looking for other recipes that use it why not try chorizo and butter bean stew, which is low calorie and filling, or slow roasted Spanish style lamb. In this case I wanted a recipe that would show case the artisan chorizo and cod seemed the perfect accompaniment.
The cod was baked in a sauce made from sautéed mushrooms with tomato and chorizo. I served it with mangetout and new potatoes. To make the tomato sauce I used Cirio Datterini baby plum tomatoes. I love the fact the Cirio range has so many different types of tomatoes to choose from which makes them great for use in cooking. They also add a great flavour to the dish, these tinned tomatoes seem to have a lot more flavour than other brands. You can almost imagine they have been picked straight off the vine.
I love the Cannivore Club subscription box. It has a cool name and would be a lovely surprise gift for a foodie. If you are a meat lover it is a great way to discover Britain’s artisan charcuterie producers. Do you like charcuterie? Would you sign up to a monthly subscription box?
I was sent a Carnivore Club box to try out in return for an honest review. I was not obliged to say anything nice.