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Moelas Guisadas ❦ Portuguese Chicken Gizzard Stew

Today's recipe is one very dear to my heart. My mother was an excellent cook. She understood how to balance food naturally. A gift she passed on to me. This was one of the first dishes I mastered, and everyone who has mine asks for the recipe.

How many times have you tasted a dish and thought, this is missing something.

Sometimes it isn't the most elaborate dishes that have the most flavour, it's simply knowing how to balance and enhance each one to make gastronomic magic.

This recipe does just that. The stew's slow reduction, the humble ingredients, the velvet smooth bread loving sauce is just one of my absolute favourite dishes.

I stew mine with red wine. Many recipes call for white wine, beer or sometimes both. Equally delicious, I prefer the red wine version.

I have to admit the word gizzard is not very appealing. I assure you they are delicious. I love their mouth feel, and bite.

Most recipes call for a 40 minute cook time, but that is not correct. Your sauce will reduce and you'll be left with chewy morsels. I recommend a 45 minute boil, followed by a 40 minute stew. My recipe guarantees perfect results.

Most pre-packaged chicken gizzard packs sold also contain chicken hearts. Although they are very flavourful, I will usually boil them to enhance the stew, but discard before serving. This of course is entirely optional.

Most frozen or fresh pre-packaged gizzards come cleaned.

This is desirable, as cleaning them yourself is tedious.

Moelas Guisadas ❦ Portuguese Chicken Gizzard Stew

Serves 6 as an appetizer 4 as a main

600 g. Chicken gizzards, cleaned and thawed if frozen

250 ml. Chicken gizzard stock, reserved boiling water

250 ml. Red wine, full bodied

50 ml. Red wine vinegar

60 ml. Extra virgin olive oil

400 g. Chopped tomatoes, canned with juice

2 tbsp. Sweet paprika, pimenton dulce

1 tsp. Double concentrate tomato paste

1 Large onion, finely chopped

6 Garlic cloves, finely chopped

2 Bay leaves

2 Sprigs of fresh thyme

1 tsp. Oregano, dried

Salt and pepper to taste

Bunch fresh parsley to finish

1. In a large pot on high heat, add chicken gizzards, a tbsp of sea salt and cover with cold fresh water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and boil uncovered for 45 minutes.

2. In a large pot add olive oil and onions on medium heat until translucent and softened. Reduce heat to low. Add tomato paste and garlic fry gently while stirring for about 1 minute

3. Drain boiled chicken gizzards and reserve the cooking water. Add chicken gizzards to onion pot along with rest of ingredients, wine and 250ml. of reserved water. Stew on low, uncovered for a further 40-50 minutes. Sauce will thicken as it reduces. If you need to thin it, add a ladle or two of reserved water.

4. Finish by rectifying salt and pepper to taste, discard bay leaves and thyme sprigs, add a few dashes of hot sauce if you like it hot, sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with a large loaf of crusty warm bread.

Pairs beautifully with a bold red wine or Champagne!! Cheers

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