Traditional Spanish chorizo sausage is very tasty and found all over Spain, each province having its own variation with most families having their own recipe. It can be fresh, which needs cooking, or cured, ready for eating.
Chorizo’s main ingredients are pork and pimenton, which gives the sausage its orange/red colour. Pimenton can be either ‘Picante’, spicy or ‘dulce’ sweet which determines the taste of the resulting sausage.
Chorizo’s origins come from rural Spain where most families would keep a pig. They would fatten it on kitchen scraps and then slaughter it during the ‘matanza’ in November, to prepare and cure the meat ready for the winter. The pig’s intestines provided the casing for the sausage after cleaning and soaking in saltwater.
See how fine chorizo Iberico from Jamones Lazo in Andalusia is made. The meat he uses for the best chorizo is sourced from the black Iberian pig fed on acorns.
Chorizo is widely available in the UK, most supermarkets stock it. For authentic Spanish chorizo, I like to get mine from Brindisa. You can order online, but I like to visit Borough Market by London Bridge and get one of the famous chorizo rolls from their grill.
How do you pronounce chorizo? Hint: the Spanish say ‘z’ like the ‘th’ sound in ‘the’ with the tongue between the teeth.
For clarity, the correct pronunciation is here!
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For the adventurous, you can try making some using commercially available sausage casing.