Portuguese food

The food of Portugal is rich, & has a depth of intensity just like its people.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Braised Pork & Chickpeas - Porco com Grao de Bico

I sometimes sit around trying to deciding what I can make for dinner, like many of you I'm sure. Having this blog makes it twice as hard as I don't want to show case things I've made before,  I want to show the best of what Portuguese food has to offer.
So during the week I make lots of different type of food Italian, French, Middle eastern & lots of Asian dishes, but since I started this blog, I try to cook at least 2 Portuguese meals a week.

The food I grew up with, is like most peasant food, the taste is unbelievably good but visually it can sometimes look unappealing especially when you want to take a photo.
Since starting this blog I've learnt to tweak a recipe here & there or totally modernise it, to the Australian palette.
A few are totally original where I've kept it totally authentic, others I've had to reduce the amount of oil or reduce the cooking time, changing cooking methods to bring out the best of the ingredients or omit ingredients that I dislike such as pigs ears, pigs feet, intestines.

This dish falls into the changing category, traditionally this dish has pigs ears, the meat is boiled with aromatics & potatoes.
I changed the dish by using pork scotch as it requires less cooking time & needs to just be lightly braised. The marbling in the meat gives it a rich flavour. I've also added capsicum paste to add depth  giving it a robust flavour, as well as making it visually appealing.
It has all the ingredients the Portuguese love pork & chickpeas.

Serves 6- 8 people

  • 1.3kg scotch pork
  • 2 tab capsicum paste
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 375g dry chickpeas
  • 200ml olive oil
  • 1 brown onion, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 chorizo, sliced in half then cut into chunks
  • 1 red capsicum, cut into chunks
  • 1 tea smokey paprika
  • 400g tinned chopped tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
  • 2 tab parsley, chopped
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tab salt
  • 2 tab parsley chopped extra for garnish

1. Cut the meat into cubes, then add the capsicum paste, garlic, stir the ingredients until well combined in a bowl adding the wine at the end. Allow the meat to marinate overnight.
Place the chickpeas in a large bowl, then cover with double the amount of water & soak over night.

2. Drain the chickpeas & place them into a pot covering them in water, then bring to the boil cooking them till there tender, then drain. Put them aside till needed.
In a deep casserole pot, heat oil on a medium heat, add the onions, garlic cook for 3 min then adding the chorizo & cook till the onion is soft & the chorizo brown.Then add the capsicum cook a further 1 min.
Add the paprika cook for 1min then add the tomatoes, white wine, parsley, bay leaves, water, chickpeas, salt. Cook on medium heat for 20min.

3. In a fry pan add more oil to fry pan, heat the pan on high heat then add the pork in small batches, cook for 4 min or until the pork is browned on all sides. Place the pork in bowl until all the meat has been fried.

4. Place all the pork into the stewed chickpeas & simmer on med/high for 10- 12min, sprinkle 1 tab of chopped parsley on top.
Serve the dish with boiled potatoes.

  • Make sure that when you cook the chickpeas no salt is added to the beans otherwise the beans won't become soft
  • Check to make sure the capsicum is soft before you add the pork
  • Don't over cook the pork other wise it will become dry & tough, so after 10 minutes check to see if the meat is cooked. It's tender enough that it doesn't need a long cooking time


belnboo said...

Wow,delicious.It tasted amazing & looks just as good.Your efforts are always appreciated by us.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

There's nothing quite like comfort food is there? That looks so delicious! :)

Mel said...

That pork & chickpea dish looks delish! What is scotch pork, is it the fillet of the pork? Mr Mel is a pork freak, he'll want this recipe done straight away! :)

Portuguese kitchen said...

Hi Belndoo- thanks,I'm glad you like it,love doing it.

Hi Lorraine- I agree, it's great at anytime of year.

Hi Mel- It's scotch pork fillet,which usually comes wrapped like a roll,it has no skin. This pork cut has marbled fat through out & so is tender & moist.It can be found at any butcher or you can buy it from Cole.Here's a photo of the pork I mean it's the one called Scotch Fillet Roast, http://www.australianpork.com.au/pages/images/1830_auspork_P.A3_porkcuts_V4.pdf