grilled chorizo; black beans with oregano; tomatillo salsa



I wanted a sausage to accompany the beans I had cooked the night before, and the only sausage I had on hand was a package of frozen chorizo. I should probably have used it as part of a composed dish, since these links were far more spicy (really hot!) than I expected of a brand marketed as broadly as Niman Ranch is. In addition, the dried chilis I tossed into the salsa which accompanied it, while ostensibly the same as a supply I had just exhausted, were much hotter.

Fortunately, the beans at least had no spiciness (only a real herbiness). I also put some rich moist black bread on the table, and both were helpful in refreshing taste buds somewhat dazed by the other 2 elements of the dinner, enabling us to enjoy the good wine.

[Note: After the picture above was taken, the juices from each of the 3 elements began to run toward the center. It was more than picturesque, it was a perfect objective for the bread, which had now become even more useful.]





  • Four links of Niman Ranch chorizo sausage, pan grilled for a few minutes over a medium flame until heated through
  • a tomatillo and tomato salsa composed of 3 chopped tomatillos from Alewife Farm and 2 chopped heirloom tomatoes (one red, one yellow) from Norwich Meadows Farm, sliced red scallions (including some of the green stems) from Paffenroth Gardens, some dried Itria-Sirissi chili (peperoncino di Sardegna intero), chopped garlic from Alewife Farm, sea salt, a pinch of vanilla bean-infused turbinado sugar, some juice of a small Limoniera lemon from Trader Joe’s, and chopped parsley from Stokes Farm
  • shelled Black Turtle beans from Norwich Meadows Farm (somewhere between fresh and dried, probably since they had been in the crisper for a while), washed, cleaned, added to a pot in which sliced red scallions from Paffenroth Gardens and sliced garlic from Alewife Farm had been sautéed in olive oil, water then added to cover, the mix slowly cooked for 3 or 4 hours the night before, water added as needed, until the beans were done, and some pungent dried Italian oregano from Buon Italia introduced during the cooking process, after which they were refrigerated, reheated the following evening, gradually adding some good vegetable broth, made from a concentrate manufactured by Better Than Bullion, to thin the condensed sauce, some chopped oregano buds from Stokes Farm stirred in while it was heating, and more, not chopped, used to garnish the beans
  • the bread was an absolutely wonderful Hudson Bread pumpernickel boule from Citarella
  • the wine was a California (Sonoma) red, The Cooper’s Art Timothy Olson Syrah 2015 [the link is to an earlier vintage]
  • the music was Jean-Baptiste Lully’s ‘Armide’, Philippe Herreweghe directing La Chapelle Royale Paris, and the Collegium Vocale