I’ve always associated Choris Rice with drunken get-togethers- The kind of late nights where gin is usually the most expensive liquor on the makeshift table, gingerly poured into red plastic cups with tonic that’s a far cry from the artisanal stuff. A vat of this port-drenched rice was usually plonked before us and like scavengers we have carelessly spooned out and scoffed down its contents night after drunken night. Bursting out of their cases, the fat globules of choris or goan sausages release their liquor into the pan and this acts as the base for your dish- it’s what the rice cooks in and the result is way more satisfying than a hangover shakshuka the following morning, believe me.
For this recipe, I’ve used Black rice that adds both texture and flavour to the dish. Since the black rice grain is more glutinous after cooking, it’s almost risotto-like when it’s done. This is great because just like risotto rice, a small quantity is enough to fill you up. In the recipe, you’ll find that I’ve used coconut vinegar, but if you can’t find any, regular white vinegar works just as well. The fortified port wine available to us locally is the preferable choice for this recipe.
Choris (Goan sausages) 250g
Black Rice 1 cup, I used Naturally Yours Black Rice
Garlic 7-8 large cloves, mashed
Onion 1 big, finely chopped
Tomato puree 1/4 cup
Salt 1 tsp
Coconut vinegar 1 tbsp + 1 tsp
Port Wine 1/2 cup
Brown sugar 1 heaped tbsp
Coriander 1/4 bunch with stems, for garnishing
Cook the black rice as per the instructions on the packet. For Naturally Yours Black Rice, i soaked the rice for just a little above 2 hours and pressure cooked it for 7 whistles. Drain the water and let it cool on the side.
Heat the choris in a pan over a low flame till it renders most of its fat. When you feel that quite a bit of the fat is rendered, increase the heat to a high till the remaining fat also seeps out. Immediately drain the sausages and reserve about 2-3 tbsp of the fat. Authentic choris has plenty of fat pockets so don’t throw out any go it as this is incredibly flavourful. It packs enough oomph to uplift scrambled eggs, omelettes, really anything you can think of. Keep aside the choris.
Heat the remaining fat in the same pan and add the mashed garlic cloves and onions to it and cook till the onion is translucent over medium heat. To this, add the tomato puree, plus salt, and let it cook till the oil separates from the sides. Add the rice, the choris, the vinegar, port wine and the sugar, then stir to combine. Reduce the heat to medium and let the liquid reduce gradually as the rice cooks further and the final result is sticky and risotto-like. Stir occasionally with a slotted or a flat spoon till it has sufficiently dried out and taste for salt. Adjust accordingly, then take it off the heat. Serve, garnished with chopped coriander stems and leaves.