I enjoy experimenting with food, but sometimes I need a little motivation to get around to it. Like not wanting to make a trip to the grocery store. Or cooking for more than just myself. A perfect example of this need for motivation is that I bought a Spanish cookbook nearly two years ago with the intention of cooking some of the foods I ate while in Spain, and I just used it for the first time this month. While it’s not exactly what I had in Spain, it’s a combination of a number of foods I remember, and I’m pretty happy with how it turned out. Here’s my attempt at a translation of it.
Macarrones con Chorizo y Tomate
from Simone Ortega’s 1080 Recetas de Cocina
Ingredients: 3/4 lb or 1 box macaroni, 1/4 lb (3.5 oz) chorizo, 1/4 lb (3.5 oz) grated gruyere or parmesan cheese (I used parmesan), 1 oz butter, 2 1/4 lb ripe tomatoes (I used canned diced tomatoes), finely diced medium onion, 3 T oil, 1 T sugar, salt
- Set the oven to 375 °F (the recipe didn’t give a temperature, so I guessed a typical casserole temperature since this recipe makes me think of a casserole).
- Cook the macaroni according to the instructions on the package, then toss in a little olive oil to keep from sticking, and set aside.
- Make the tomato sauce. Brown the diced onion in a saucepan, then add the diced tomatoes (minus skin and seeds, if fresh tomatoes) and break them down by mashing with the back of a spoon or a potato masher. Let simmer for about 15 minutes, then mash the mixture a bit more. Mix in the sugar and some salt to taste. Leave the tomato sauce a bit chunky.
- Mix half of the cheese and all but two or three large spoonfuls of the tomato sauce with the macaroni, then pour into a glass or porcelain oven-safe baking dish.
- Remove the chorizo from the skin, and sprinkle small chunks across the top of the macaroni mixture, burying it slightly so that it doesn’t burn.
- Spread the rest of the tomato sauce on top of the mixture and sprinkle the rest of the cheese over. The recipe called for dropping small chunks of butter across the top of the mixture, but since the chorizo already adds so much moisture to this dish, I opted to cover the dish with foil for all but the last 15 minutes of cooking, instead.
- Bake covered for about 30-45 minutes, removing the foil for the last 15 minutes of baking (when the chorizo begins to firm up).
I forgot to take a picture of this dish, so I’ll add one the next time I make it.