This dish can best be described as Spain on a plate, from the spicy chorizo (pronounced chore-e-tho, as I learned on a recent trip to Spain), to the hot smoked paprika (love this stuff), to one of my favorite little cephalopods — squid. It requires minimum effort, but the result is maximum in flavor. Just a handful of ingredients is needed to transform the ordinary chickpea (aka garbanzo bean) into a flavorful plate of food.On most days, I feel like I am just biding my time, waiting to sit down in the evening to a good meal, a glass of wine, and good company. These are the little, everyday things in life that I cherish the most. Although, if we were eating this meal in Spain, dinner would be served closer to 10:00 p.m. (or later); many restaurants don’t even open for dinner until at least 9:00 p.m. And, if you show up closer to 9:00 p.m. rather than 10:00 p.m., you will quickly distinguish yourself as a tourist (as we quickly learned).
If you happen to have access to a grill, you can grill the squid (and peppers too) to impart a nice smokiness that is a hallmark of charcoal grilling. This is how I prefer to cook squid, if only I had a grill and a location to store it (which I sadly do not, given my rather compact ~800 square foot apartment).
Oh, how I wish I had some of that spicy chorizo right now!
Squid, Chickpea, and Chorizo Salad
Mix of peppers (used 2 red bell peppers, 1 orange bell pepper, 2 Anaheim or Cubanelle)
3 1/2 cups *cooked chickpeas (can use canned chickpeas), rinsed and drained
1 small bunch of parsley, about 3/4 cup chopped plus extra to garnish
2 Fresno chiles, seeded and thinly sliced
1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 1/3 pounds squid, bodies sliced into ~ 1/2-inch thick rings, tentacles chopped in half
12 ounces spicy Spanish chorizo, cut into small cubes
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon hot smoked paprika
Juice and zest of 1 large lemon
*I prefer the texture of dried beans compared to canned (which tend to be a bit too soft for my preference).
Roast the peppers on an open gas flame, turning with metal tongs, until charred on all sides (alternatively, can place under the broiler or roast on the grill, turning every few minutes). Place in a paper bag about 10 minutes. Remove from the bag, and with the side of a chef’s knife, scrape away the charred skin. Cut open and seed the peppers. Cut into thin slices. In a large bowl mix the peppers and any juices with the chickpeas, parsley, and Fresno chiles. Set aside.
Heat a large skillet over high heat until smoking. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to the pan. Add the garlic and saute ~30 seconds. Add the squid and stir-fry for ~2 minutes. Scatter the chorizo over the squid, continue to cook for 1 more minute. Add the garlic, squid, and chorizo to the bowl with the peppers and chickpeas. Season with salt and pepper, hot smoked paprika, then dress with the remaining olive oil, lemon juice and lemon zest. Mix together. Garnish with chopped parsley and a drizzle of olive oil.
*Alternatively, prepare the squid and peppers on the grill.