ʽʽHi, I’m Benjamin Nunn – critic, gourmand and author of Ben Viveur. I like to eat and drink. And cook. And write.

You might have read me in an in-flight magazine, or a beer publication, but here on my own blog I'm liberated from the editorial shackles of others so anything goes.

I deal with real food and drink in the real world, aiming to create recipes that taste awesome, but which can be created by mere mortals without the need for tons of specialist equipment and a doctorate in food science. Likewise, I tend to review relaxed establishments that you might visit on a whim without having to sell your first-born, rather than hugely expensive restaurants and style bars in the middle of nowhere with a velvet rope barrier, a stringent dress code and a six-month waiting list!

There's plenty of robust opinion, commentary on the world of food and drink, and lots of swearing, so look away now if you're easily offended.

Otherwise, tuck your bib in, fill your glass and turbo-charge your tastebuds. We're going for a ride... Ben Appetit!

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Lockdown Lunches #3: Chicken & Chorizo Fusilli

Happy May 19 everybody!

Yes, it's still May. Yes, it's still 2020. I know, I know. Time has slowed down to the pace of a snail that has been told by Dr. Limax to take things easy.

C&C Fusilli
But, happily, I've come up with tonnes of new recipes during Lockdown, as well as tweaking and refining a great many more from my extensive back catalogue.

(Well, the pubs aren't open and I've not had all that much else to be getting on with, so where better to spend my time than in the kitchen?)

What with me being the kind of person I am'n'shit, I've no idea if I'll get round to sharing absolutely all these delicious dishes with you chaps, but here's another one to be getting on with.

I hope you like it. I hope you'll try it, and I hope you're keeping safe during these difficult times.

Chicken & Chorizo Fusilli

A tasty and flexible pasta dish that is almost impossible to fuck up!

Creamy chicken pasta can easily be blander than a cup of milky tea with James Blunt's accountant, but a good strong Chorizo will add lots of flavour, and the black onion seeds give an unexpectedly delicious crunch!

Ingredients - serves 2:

It's a good 'un
Chicken pieces, about 1/2 lb.
Chorizo, several bite-sized slices
Mascarpone, one tub

Fresh Fusilli (or indeed any pasta of your choice I guess)

Onion, 1 medium size, finely chopped
Shitake Mushrooms, 4-6, roughly chopped

White wine, a glass or so

Black Onion Seeds
White pepper
Garlic salt
Capers, finely chopped or blitzed to smush

To serve:

Fresh Parmesan
Black Pepper


Heat the Chorizo in a dry pan on a fairly high heat until the oils start to seep out, then fry the onion in the Chorizo oil until it softens.

Sizzling onion in chorizo oil
Add the chicken pieces, along with the garlic salt, white pepper and black onion seeds, and cook evenly. If your Chorizo is very mild you might need to add some other herbs or spices at this point, but it's unlikely to be necessary.

Next chuck in the mushrooms and capers, cook for a couple more minutes, then add the wine, turn the heat right down, cover and simmer for half an hour or so.

Shortly before serving, stir in the Mascarpone, and mix it up to ensure a creamy consistency, before adding your pasta. Depending on how fresh the pasta is and how al dente you like it, you might not actually need to cook it separately first - just bung it in the pan with a little more wine or water and heat it through in the sauce for about five minutes.

Serve as you would any other creamy pasta dish with whatever you like - Parmesan, Black Pepper, Green Salad, Garlic Bread if you're Peter Kay, Nice Chianti if you're Hannibal Lector - and enjoy.

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