This should be so thick that you can nearly stand a spoon in it.
1-1½ Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
1 large leek, trimmed, halved, washed thoroughly and sliced
2 sticks celery, well washed and sliced
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1 Tbsp thyme leaves
3-4 (280g / about 9 oz) fresh (soft) chorizo sausages, sliced
750ml (about 1½ pints) unsalted vegetable or chicken stock
500ml (about 1 pint) water
400g (14 oz) can crushed tomatoes
150g (5-6 oz) green beans, topped and tailed and cut into thirds
Finely grated zest 1 lemon
1 cup puy lentils
1 tsp salt
Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling, optional
1 Put oil in a saucepan and set pan over a low to medium heat. Drop in butter, then leek, celery, carrots, garlic and thyme. Cover pan with a lid, lower heat and cook gently for 15 minutes, until very tender; if vegetables look as if they are starting to catch, splash in a little water.
2 Heat a slick of olive oil in a medium-sized frying pan over medium heat and add the chorizo. Brown quickly on both sides, turning with tongs, then tilt pan, let fat drain off and transfer chorizo to a plate; don’t cook chorizo right through as it continues cooking in the soup.
3 Add stock, water, tomatoes, green beans and lemon zest to vegetables. Rinse lentils in a sieve until water runs clear and add to soup with drained chorizo. Bring to the boil, then lower heat and cook gently, partially covered with a lid, for 45-50 minutes or until everything is very tender. Stir in salt, then check seasoning. Mash gently 3-4 times with a potato masher to thicken the soup if wished. If soup requires a little more liquid, add hot stock or water. If liked, serve with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
This should be so thick that you can nearly stand a spoon in it, however, it can be thinned with a little hot stock or water at the end of cooking if you need to stretch it to serve more people. If liked, drizzle individual bowls with a little extra virgin olive oil before serving. It’s important to use top quality meaty chorizo sausages, not bags of sawdust and fat.
Originating in Spain, chorizo sausage has many variations but always contains pork – usually fatty and coarsely ground – and smoked paprika, which gives chorizo its distinctive red tinge and smoky flavour. Chorizo is often spiked with chilli and comes in varying degrees of hotness. It comes as a fresh soft sausage that must be cooked, or dried, to be served sliced like salami. Mexican chorizo often contains beef as well as pork and the meat is more finely ground.