Tonight I made a rice pilaf dish with chorizo and chickpeas that I found in the March issue of Rachael Ray’s magazine. You made your own rice pilaf and then added chorizo and chickpeas along with a little tomato and baby kale. It was quite tasty. Paula and I enjoyed the meal and then spent the evening together. We played a game of Scrabble to pass the time. Our life has been different since I retired. Now that I no longer have any “homework”, we are able to relax more frequently together on the evenings when she is not working.

Anyway, if you want to try this dish, here is what you will need. Please note that the ingredients listed below are meant to make a quantity that will serve just two individuals.

  • 1 1/2 cups of chicken stock
  • A pinch saffron
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 1/4 cup of spaghetti, broken into 1- to 2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup of basmati white rice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1/2 pound of chorizo with casings removed (Note: The original recipe called for cured chorizo but we were not able to find it so we just used regular chorizo.)
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 of a 15.5 oz. can of chickpeas, drained
  • 2.5 ounce of baby kale (or 1 small bunch Tuscan kale, stemmed and chopped)
  • 1/2 of a jar (about 6 ounces) of piquillo peppers in water, drained and chopped
  • 1 tomato on the vine, chopped

In a medium skillet, heat the butter over medium-high. When the butter foams, add the pasta and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, about 1 minute. Add the rice and season with salt and pepper. Stir the rice until it starts to turn golden, about 1 more minute. Add the rice and spaghetti to a rice cooker.

Combine 1 cup of the chicken broth and the saffron. Add the chicken broth to a rice cooker along with the rice and the toasted spaghetti. Cook the rice and spaghetti.

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high. Add the chorizo and cook, stirring often, until browned, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a medium bowl. Add the onion and the garlic to the skillet and cook, stirring constantly, until softened, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the chickpeas, kale and piquillos. Stir until the greens wilt, about 3 minutes. Add the remaining saffron stock and reduce the heat to low. Stir the tomato and the chorizo into the skillet.

To serve, divide the pilaf among shallow bowls and top with the chickpea stew. Enjoy! It is a rich dish but not too filling!

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