If you love the spicy punchy flavour of Chorizo in your vegan recipes I’ve got great news for you. There’s now a DIY Chorizo kit to make at home… And it’s great fun too!
A couple of weeks ago I came across Absolute Cooking, who produce a range of meat-free DIY sausage kits. Alison Challoner-Jones kindly sent me two samples to try (a vegan Chorizo and a vegan Maple Bacon mix) and both have been a big success in our house.
As I grew up in a very sausage-savy part of Germany and I can usually speak with great authority on all things sausage. 😉 However, even though I used to eat other meats, I have never tried pork in my life and therefore couldn’t tell you if either the Chorizo or Bacon were ‘authentic’. What I can say however, is that the flavours are excellent and I’ve been tempted back to the fridge several times for a slice or three to munch with some crackers. Very moorish!
The kits couldn’t be easier to make! The Chorizo simply required the addition of 200ml water, 2 tbsp red wine vinegar and 2 tbsp vegetable oil. (The Bacon mix was equally easy with added water, soy sauce and vegetable oil.) I used a measuring jug for my wet ingredients and added the dried mix. Within seconds of stirring, the soft mass came together perfectly in a slightly springy ‘dough’ that could easily be separated and shaped.
I formed the Chorizo sausages, wrapped them in foil and baked them at 180˚C/350˚F for half an hour, turning once.
Most people who are new to meat-free eating prefer the slightly denser and chewier texture of seitan/wheat gluten. For example, whenever the German company Wheaty have a stall and samples at a UK veggie festival they always get raving reviews and unanimously positive feedback.
Alison’s products have got the same lovely texture and here comes the best bit… the ingredients list of Chorizo mix:
Vital wheat gluten, nutritional yeast, chickpea flour, herb and spice blend, vegetable bouillon, natural hickory smoke flavour…. THAT’S IT!
For this colourful Orzo salad I picked juicy tomatoes, spring onions, chives and Chorizo pieces – the flavours and textures complemented each other beautifully. My trusted ‘taste testers’ were particularly keen on the spicy smokiness of the sausage.
As the kids were hungry after a busy day at school I didn’t get the chance to write down a proper recipe. All I managed was a handful of photographs and “DINNERTIME!” before this vibrantly coloured dish vanished at lightning speed.
As a guide though:
I cooked enough orzo pasta for four in vegetable stock and a little turmeric to give this fabulous yellow colour.
In a separate pan I briefly fried chorizo pieces and some sliced spring onions, added the drained orzo, more sliced spring onions, chopped chives and sweet cocktail tomatoes. Together with an olive oil-vinegar-garlic vinaigrette this made a stunning dinner which would look equally fabulous on a buffet or picnic.
I was sent the samples by Absolute Cooking without a request for this review. But as I thoroughly enjoyed making and eating the sausages I felt it was only fair to share! 😉