Home-made chorizo


Home-made chorizo

Home-made chorizo

Even though we didn’t have our own pork this year, I decided to make some chorizo. That way I would know exactly what goes into it and how much fat it contains. The recipe basically calls for 80% meat and 20% fat but as the pork belly I bought was very lean, the fat percentage was considerably higher. It is possible to make chorizo completely from scratch, adding your own spices and flavourings to the meat and fat mixture. However, as the climate on the coast is warmer and more humid than in the mountains, and not ideal for drying and curing meats, I wanted to be completely sure that there wouldn’t be a problem and we wouldn’t all be poisoned so used a ready-made chorizo mix call “Chorizol”. I then added more oregano, chilli pepper and chopped garlic.

4kg shoulder of pork
1kg belly pork, derinded
1 sachet chorizol
2 1/2 teaspoons chilli pepper
8 cloves garlic
handful oregano
hog casings

Mince the meat and fat together. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Leave to mature in the fridge or a cool place for 24 hours.

Put the mixture into the casings. Shape into individual sausages.

Making chorizo sausage

Making chorizo sausage

Hang up to dry in a cool, airy place. The ideal temperature is between 10ºC and 13ºC. Leave to dry for 7 days. If the temperature is cool enough, you can store the chorizo outside the fridge but I decided to freeze it and take out use as needed. I also saved some of the fresh chorizo back and froze it without drying.


Making liquid detergent

I’d heard long ago about the benefits of block soap made from used olive oil and caustic soda, but had never heard about using oil to make liquid detergent that could then be used in the washing machine. It is apparently amazing and will get through the toughest of stains.

Last weekend when we were round at the neighbour’s house, his sisters had decided to make some so I helped so that I could see how it was done.

You will need a container that can take 50 litres and a stick for stirring. It is important to stir constantly, in the same direction.

Basically, the idea is to warm 1 litre of water. You then add 1kg of caustic soda. It is important not to let the water get too hot or it will bubble over.

Pour the used 1 litre of used oil into the large container.

Add the soda and the other ingredients:
2 litres of softener
6 litres of liquid detergent
1/2kg percarbonate whitener “blanqueador percarbonate”
40 litres of water

Stir gently until the liquid has cooled. The detergent can be transferred to containers immediately but shouldn’t be used for about 8-9 days.