Tag Archives: chorizo

Heinz BIG SOUP: Fiery chicken and chorizo – reviewed

heinzchickenchorizo.jpgLet’s be honest. Tinned soups don’t compare to fresh ones, so my scoring system here is somewhat separate from the ones I judge the shop-bought fresh soups by. I am somewhat disorganised at home, so rather than ensure I have an interesting fresh soup ‘in date’ and ready to go if I happen to be working from home, I have a nuclear bunker of emergency soups. This is one such emergency soup, and a staple of my emergency soup store-cupboard.

Description: The marketing folk at Heinz are pulling no punches – “A delicious fiery recipe made with tender pieces of chicken and chorizo with green pepper, onion and chunky vegetables. This great tasting soup is packed full of chunky ingredients and is full on flavour. GO BIG OR GO HUNGRY!” Superlatives aside, this is fairly accurate as descriptions go, and the meat and veg proportions are as generous as any I’ve ever seen in a tinned soup.

Health: ~330 calories per can (let’s not pretend there are two portions in a can, Mr Heinz). 12.4g of fat (4g saturates), 35g carbs (10.2g sugar), 3.6g of fibre, 2.8g of salt. It’s not winning any awards for salt or fibre, but for the heartiness of the soup I think this is a respectable scorecard.

Taste: Well, it has that somewhat glutinous texture that all tinned soup has. Why is it that tinned soup has a weird surface tension, like it’s being held in place by some internal gravity, in a way few other liquids do? As to Heinz’s superlatives: delicious is strong, though it is tasty… the pleasant taste is somewhat marred by some strange property of the way they’ve dropped the paprika bomb to imbue this soup with its ‘fiery’ flavour – it has an almost gritty aftertaste which is hard to explain and not entirely pleasant. That said; big healthy chunks of chicken and chorizo in a thick flavoursome soup (mostly flavoured with salt and paprika and tomato, but there’s nothing wrong with that) makes for a satisfying lunch from a can.

Full-o-meter: Needed toast due to the lack of fibre in the can. But it is a big soup and most people with more modest appetites would probably be sated by this.

Make it yourself: Would probably be improved, and probably not too hard to do – make a tasty, paprika spiced veg and tomato soup around some pan-seared chicken and chorizo and you’re away. And you’d deal with the weird surface tension and gritty spice issues, no doubt.

Verdict: 4/5 – pretty much as good as tinned soups get, IMO.

Soulfood Food Co OnePot British Free Range British Pulled Pork Stew review – @soulfoodfoodco

Whilst technically this isn’t in keeping with the ‘soup’ reviews, it’s not that far off and so – judge rules, in it goes.

soulfulpulledporkDescription: The full name of this soup is “Free Range British Pulled Pork Stew with Chorizo, Beans & Spelt.” The official description reads: “Hearty and rustic, with smoky British chorizo & nutty grains of finest Somerset spelt.” All of these things are true; suspended in a light, tomato-based stew/soup, with chunks of red pepper adding extra depth and a faint hit of spice coming through the sweet tomato and pork soup.

Health: 319 calories would be a lot for a soup this size, but isn’t that much for a super-hearty stew that really doesn’t need any bread to go with it to keep you full up. Despite the ‘Flagelot’ beans (small, tic-tac shaped, green and surprisingly crisp beans despite stewing, but without a particularly strong beany taste), the stew is low in fibre (1.9g),  but high in protein (30g), carbs (26.1g), fat (9.9g) and ridiculously high on the salt front (2.96g). Healthy-ish at best, I suspect, but the taste…

Taste: …absolutely makes up for it. A heady aroma of meat from the pulled pork and generous amounts of chorizo, coupled with the sweetness of the tomato-based stew and veg, the chewy, salty moreishness of the meat itself, the a faint Cayenne & paprika-induced heat makes this an easy pot to devour. Not much sign of the ‘nutty spelt’ but, y’know, who cares? Yum.

Full-o-meter: Pretty good. Lots of meat and beans in every mouthful makes for a pleasantly full tummy.

Make it yourself?: No, not for me. The ingredients list over at the Soulfoul Food Co’s website makes clear that this is one for IMMENSE batch cooking only as it’s clearly a complicated dish

Verdict: 4.5/5. Loses minor 1/2 point for high salt, low fibre.

Waitrose tomato, lentil & chorizo soup review

Description: “A thick hearty soup of red lentils, tomatoes and chorizo seasoned with garlic, black pepper and smoked paprika.” Yep.

Health: Not bad, although heavy-ish for a pot this size – 422 calories for 600g. Low in sat fat, good amount of fibre.

Taste: I do like these Waitrose soups. Rich, thick red lentils, with a nice sharp tang from the tomatoes and a good amount of seasoning accompanied every now and then with a rewarding salty chew of chorizo. Yum.

Full-o-meter: Only had a half pot (with toast) but imagine this would keep you going for a reasonable amount of time.

Verdict: 4/5. A good one; more chorizo, more spice would have boosted the score (I like the spicy chorizo!), likewise a slightly lower calorie count. But a good option!

Eat chorizo and chickpea soup review – Big Bold @eat_news

Hmm, new soup day! Excitement!

Description: From Eat: “A hearty and warming soup packed with chorizo, chickpeas and tomatoes with a hint of smoked paprika and red chilli. Garnished with flat leaf parsley.” Yep, about right!

Health: Big on most nutritional fronts – Big Bold was the biggest I allowed myself at 374 cals for the 16 oz portion. Salt also slightly off the charts but not too bad on other fronts.

Taste: It feels a bit unfair to score this against Pret when Eat has been a little cheap in winning the taste war by adding loads of salt. That said, it’s also much fuller of chorizo and chickpea than the Pret alternative (ok, so that had – a few – butterbeans instead of chickpeas) – but probably does win out on salty, spicy, tomato & sausagey goodness.

Full-o-meter: Good – I think. I’ve been a bit rubbish on the diet lately and got it with some rye bread. But the chickpea/fibre in it will make it work.

Verdict: 4.5/5. Definitely has an edge over the Pret alternative and definitely worth having again.