Cape Verde is a collection of islands off the west coast of Africa, and cachupa is their national dish. There are many different versions, but most are based on some kind of pork or perhaps freshly caught fish, although vegetables may be substituted. Since Cape Verde was a Portuguese colony, this rendition contains chorizo. Because sausage is relatively pricy, the result is probably deserving of the description cachupa rica, which means it was prepared when the family was feeling prosperous.
Cape Verde Sausage Stew (Cachupa)
- Large Dutch oven required
- 1 tbsp oil 15 mL
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 can (14 oz/ 398 mL) tomatoes, with juice
- 2 cups chicken stock 500 mL
- 1 piece (1 lb/500 g) fresh pork belly cut into 6 pieces
- 1 small green cabbage (about 1 lb/500 g), cored and quartered
- 1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into chunks (about 1 inch/2.5 cm)
- 1 can (15 oz/425 g) hominy, drained
- 1 cup drained cooked red kidney beans 250 mL
- 8 oz dry-cured chorizo sausage, thinly sliced 250 g
- Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C)
- 1. In Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and bay leaves and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add tomatoes and juice, and stock and bring to a boil. Add pork belly and return to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
- 2. Stir in cabbage, sweet potato, hominy, kidney beans and chorizo and return to a boil. Cover and transfer to preheated oven. Bake until pork is very tender and vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes.
- 3. Remove from oven. Let pan stand, covered, at room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving. Discard bay leaves.
- Makes 8 to 10 servings
- You will need a Dutch oven with a capacity of at least 5 quarts (5 L) to accommodate the volume of this dish.
- This stew is traditionally made with pork belly, which means it is rather fatty. If you prefer a leaner result, use trimmed boneless pork butt.
- If you are cooking for someone who is gluten-free, check labels on packaged ingredients, such as sausage and stock. They may contain added gluten.
- To make 1 cup (250 mL) of cooked red kidney beans: soak and cook 1⁄2 cup (125 mL) dried red kidney beans, or use half of a can (14 to 19 oz/398 to 540 mL) of red kidney beans. Drain and rinse the beans before using.
Judith Finlayson https://judithfinlayson.com/