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Cocido
A brothy pot of chickpeas, with lots of meat and vegetables added—kind of a Spanish pot-au-feu.

Ingredients:
3 cups dried chickpeas, soaked in water overnight
4 to 5 pound stewing chicken, skinned and cut into 6 pieces
1 pound pork loin cut into 3-inch chunks
1 pound ham hock
1 pound slice of veal shank
2 cups dry white wine
1 quart chicken stock
6 chorizos
1 large onion, minced
3 large garlic cloves, minced
4 medium waxy potatoes, peeled and cubed
3 parsnips, peeled and coarsely diced
3 carrots, coarsely diced
1 bay leaf
1 fresh red hot chili pepper (optional)

Directions:
1. Drain the chickpeas and place them in a large stockpot. Add the chicken, pork loin, ham hock, veal shank, wine, chicken stock and 1 quart of water. Bring to a boil, remove froth, reduce heat to moderate, and simmer gently, uncovered, for 2 1/2 hours.
2. Add the chorizo, onion, garlic, potatoes, parsnips, carrots, bay leaf and chili. Simmer gently, uncovered, for 1 hour more.
3. When ready to serve cocido, remove ham hock and veal shank. Cut meat off of the bones, discard bones, and return shredded meat to stockpot. Remove the bay leaf.
4. To serve, either place the cocido in a large tureen and serve from the tureen at table, or divide the cocido among 6 large soup bowls, making sure each person gets 1 piece of chicken and 1 chorizo. Serve hot.

There are cocidos made all over Spain, and each region has its own variation. Basically, it is a brothy pot of chickpeas, with lots of meat and vegetables added—kind of a Spanish pot-au-feu. The most famous cocido comes from Madrid-cocido Madrileño-where the main meat is beef. But the best one we've ever had was in Galicia, where pork products stole the show (this would be a shock to the medieval Jews, who are said to have invented this dish). In any variation, however, it is the luscious Spanish garbanzos that are the soul of the dish. Cocido is normally served in several courses, but the following recipe simplifies that practice; simply serve each diner a large bowl of broth, vegetables, meat, and chickpeas. It is an immensely satisfying winter meal. By the way, we like to stray from tradition and throw a chili pepper into the pot; we think it adds another level of interest to the dish. Serves 6