Raw morcilla, he said. I thought he was joking. He’s a man who is freaked out by meat that has to be chewed off bone. So….no chicken wings. He also doesn’t “do” garlic unless he is blissfully unaware of its presence in a dish. But uncooked blood sausage? No problem. I took his word when he bought some links in the supermarket and sliced them up. He served them on a chopping board with crackers to make them more presentable. I ignored the crackers and popped one and then another in my mouth. He was right. Morcilla rocks raw, though the casing is a bit chewy and should probably be removed. It’s iron-y and cool, mushy like my dad’s favorite Russian ЛИВЕРНЫЕ КОЛБАСЫ, but a bit more red from metallic blood and with little bits of cartilage and fat mixed in to make the texture not so smooth.
He bought a rather large pack of morcilla and had quite a bit left over. He decided to cook with it one night, having looked up a new recipe on his phone on the way back from a soccer game. “Morcilla pasta,” he said. “That’s gonna be dinner.” When we got home, I got in the shower and made moves to get ready for what I thought would be my last night in BsAs but which, due to a snowstorm, would be my second last. He set to work making a sauce out of the morcilla with some chopped up onion and wine. He added the noodles and sauteed them, letting the flavors of the crisped up, caramelized morcilla bleed into the pasta. Some chunks of leftover cheese were thrown in on a whim and the dish was plated with a medallion of the raw stuff lain over the top.
The morcilla and onion melted into a velvety sauce which stuck to the strands of spaghetti. Chunks of the sausage remained dispersed throughout, adding a meaty bite and bursts of metallic, organ flavor. The cheese was largely unnecessary but the ring of raw morcilla on top was just right and added a stunning visual.
Ironically, I woke up the next morning to find that a morcilla-related quote from my blog had been published in the Daily Express. I had asked Mr. Stachowski whether he had any of their delicious blood sausage for me to taste and he rather crassly responded in the negative. Only one week after the incident I was swimming in the stuff in grilled, raw, empanada’ed and pasta sauce form. I’m a lucky gal indeed.