02 July 2011

Peas with Eggs and Chorizo

Whatever finicky tendencies I had as a child (ketchup on mac and cheese, anyone?), I left them all behind once I hit college in New York City.  There is a whole world of food on that little island: sushi, burritos, bagels and lox, spanakopita, sesame chicken, kim chi, soul food, falafels, and on and on.  I became an enthusiastic believer in trying new things.

This characteristic has served me well in Portugal.

Octopus, blood sausage, pig trotters, tripe, snails, and fried sardines-- they all require a bit of fearless tasting for me, whereas they are second nature to Bacalhau Boy and his clan.  When my family came to visit last year, my sister-in-law won the prize for most culinarily adventurous by tucking into a pig snout from the elaborate platter of meats my father-in-law proudly presented for lunch.

Now, to be fair, Bacalhau Boy is no grand fan of offal or entrails. We rarely eat snout.  But this past week I craved the taste of summer-- the kind of summer which my inner child's tastebuds would recognize.  I made pulled pork sandwiches with homemade cole slaw on top.  I made a chilled sriracha macaroni salad that left my mouth tingling with delicious spiciness.  I grilled cheeseburgers American style-- WITH the bun, eaten by hand.

But oh, how the pendulum of married life swings.

I filled my belly with familiar deliciousness.  Also, I watched my dear BB good-naturedly eat the mayonnaise-laced cole slaw and the vinegar-based barbecue sauce and the spicy sriracha salad despite his hatred of mayonnaise, vinegar, and spicy foods.  I felt a teensy bit bad for him, even though I couldn't understand his weirdo tastebuds.

Finally, once my inner child was appeased, I figured it was time to take pity. The next night I made my honey some real Portuguese comfort food.

Luckily, there is one comfort food here which we both really love.  (You didn't think I was going to cook him tripe soup, did you?)  Ervilhas com ovos takes just 15 minutes to make and has a garlicky kick in a low-carb package.

What a genius concept for a quick summer meal!  Saute a little onion and garlic with sliced chorizo, add in some frozen peas, top with eggs and cook until set.

The portions below will be plenty for two if this is all you are making.  If you want to stretch it to feed four, try some rustic bread slathered with some yummy soft queijo da serra.

Or serve it next to the hamburgers and hot dogs at the Fourth of July picnic.  Blow people away with your worldliness and use of peas.

(But please-- don't add tripe.)

Ervilhas com Ovos
(Peas with Eggs and Chorizo)
serves 2 generously, 4 as a side

2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 lb of chorizo, sliced into rounds
3 cups of peas (frozen is fine, if fresh then parboil first)
4-6 eggs
salt and pepper to taste

1. In a deep saute pan with a cover, cook the onion in the olive oil over a medium heat until just translucent. Add the garlic and cook until starting to brown.

2. Add the chorizo and cook 3-5 minutes, until the oil takes on a slight reddish color and the chorizo is charred a bit on the edges.  (tip: the thinner you slice the chorizo, the more crunch you will get.  And crunch is good!)

3. Pour the peas into the pan-- straight from the freezer is fine-- and mix.  Cover and cook about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4. Uncover and crack the eggs carefully on top of the mixture, trying not to break the yolk.  Cover again and let cook until the yolks have a thin film of white over them, and all the visible white of the egg is set.  Serve immediately.


  1. What a simple, brilliant way to add a poached egg onto vegetables. Definitely going to try this!

    Oh snout, despite all the delicious things I ate in Portugal, that meal stands out for sure...speaking of trying new things, however, I made your spicy Greek chicken w/ boneless, skinless chicken thighs last night. SO GOOD!

  2. Yayyyy! Soooo glad you liked it. Now you have me craving it, too... :)