Prawns, Chorizo, Beer

Leeds Kirkgate Market, Saturday Morning, 8am.

Even waking up in the dark on a weekend is vaguely exciting if I’m food shopping…Sad, I know, but what can I say – I’m a nerd. I have no idea what I’m going to buy, because that kind of defeats the object; the ‘weekend meal’ – the one I make the most effort with and have the most time for – is a seasonal, fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants affair.

We always end up in the Fish market. With the opportunity to buy glistening, red-gilled fish as fresh as this, I don’t want to miss out. I want my shellfish with mud still adorning the shell. Taking home and freezing is not an option. This time, huge Prawns catch my eye – green and pink-shelled, so much baby lobsters or mutant Crayfish. I’m not sure if they are local, but it’s no use – I’m locked in. Those suckers are coming home with me.

Prawns and Chorizo. Truly one of the reasons God created tastebuds; simplicity, flavour, sweet and vibrant, you never have enough. Just slice the prawns down the middle with a sharp knife, clean them up a little, and place under a red-hot grill for all of five minutes; when that sweet flesh is white, you’re ready.

While this is grilling, I’ve thrown one chopped up stick of Chris Wildman’s Yorkshire Chorizo (available at Paninoteca in the Market) into a dry pan. Once you’ve tried this, you’ll be forever a slave to it, turning your nose up at your usual brand. Slightly softer than you’re used to, it’s got a slightly more smoky,  Pimenton note going on that just sets it above everything else. Gently fry the chunks off – not burning – and then pour the whole lot over the prawns. The flavour is in that orange oil; that’s what Chorizo is all about.

The beer? Oakham’s Inferno (4%abv) – a beer I’ve been drinking a lot of recently. Pale, slightly wheaty and packed with subtle Grapefruit and Lemon notes, it’s slightly sherbety nature and dry finish is perfect for seafood; cutting through the fat in the meat and complimenting the sweetness of the Prawn. One is not enough, quite simply.

Another good beer to enjoy with this beer would be Leeds’s Hellfire. A pale ale that tastes nowhere near it’s 5.2%abv, it’s crisp, clean, flinty and excellent chilled. Again, the dry finish makes it moreish, and if used on the table will disappear as quickly as the food itself.

Some great beers, and ones that  – along with the food – transports me, just for a little while, to sunnier, warmer climes.

About leighgoodstuff

Blog: I'm Leigh Linley; born and bred in Leeds, and writing about it since 2005. TGS exists solely to highlight the great beers that are out there; brewed with passion by Craft Brewers around the World. I also edit the 'Tavern Tales' section of Culture Vulture, which looks at Pubs and Pub Life rather than the beer in the glass.

Posted on 18/11/2011, in Beer and Food and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. Love the label on that hellfire!

    Oakham are doing some great ales at the moment too and prawns and chorizo is one of my fave combos, quite like it with Orval but then again i like everythig wtih orval..

  2. Good Stuff indeed! Not tried either of the beers and will be on the look out for them. The market sounds like a great place, shame I wouldn’t be an early enough bird with the likes of you around 🙂

  3. You are blog mad at the minute and I love it!

    Keep the recipes coming mate.

    I’m off to the market tomorrow to buy black pudding and whatever looks good, it’s one of lifes simple pleasures.

  4. Te food looks delicious.

    Oakham’s Inferno is also one of my favourite beers at the moment.

    Rhythm and Booze in Skipton stock it on a regular basis and they quite often have it on special offer. They also have the excellent Oakham Bishop’s Farewell.

  5. This all looks fantastic! Too bad they don’t sell those beers over here yet. But I’m definitely going to try that recipe!

  6. Some very nice prose there. Really need to up my game on seafood cooking, given proximity to Newlyn.

  7. Wow that looks tasty Leigh, chorizo + prawns = deliciousness

    We get quite a few Oakham beers on in the Potteries area, Inferno, Bishops Farewell, Citra to name but a few, lovely balanced beers that are just bankers when all else across the bar fails to impress…

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