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Jun 5, 2011 04:40 PM

From Spain With Love, a new TV series

This new series premiered last week on the Cooking Channel in the US and Food Network in Canada. It's a Canadian production, starring Anne Sibonney.

Gwyneth Paltrow and Mario Batali, step aside! No agonizing scenes of celebrities motoring around in convertible Mercedes, no inane dialogues and most of all, no actresses on food-oriented shows trying to avoid the consumption of meat (or food, in general). No moaning over yogurt and grilled vegetables.

I've watched many food shows on Spain. Everyone is cooking kokotxa in the Basque country but no one shows how the kokotxa is removed. Or how ugly the hake is! It's like The Beauty and The Beast but in this case, The Beauty IS part of the Beast.

The Chicago Tribune liked it too. See this article, "Five reasons to watch From Spain With Love".

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  1. Are you mixing up merluza (hake) with rape (monkfish)? Merluza is sleek, pretty fish.... monkfish is delicious, but the stuff of grotesque and monstrous nightmares. About cocochas, when you go to the market here, you can ask them do to that for you (along with anything else you can do with a whole fish), so no one has to do it themselves in Spain.

    Rape (caution, scary):


    1 Reply
    1. re: butterfly

      Hi Butterfly,

      Thanks for the links. I'm not confusing them. I do recognize monkfish and agree that it is nightmarish but delicious (especially the liver). The merluza (hake) shown on the program was, for some reason, not as sleek and attractive as the one in your picture. Maybe it was a really big one and they filmed it, mouth-open, jaw wide-apart.

      I'm sure when you buy it, the kokotxas are separated, which is how I've seen it before. That's why I was so interested to see them do it from scratch.

    2. I caught about the last half of the show this weekend, and I really liked what I saw. Looking forward to future episodes!

      3 Replies
      1. re: alliegator

        Switched to Verizon FiOS when I moved, and they don't carry The Cooking Channel on the level service I'm getting. Grrrr....

        1. re: LindaWhit

          The Cooking Channel is on channel 166 for Verizon FIOS here in New York City. And I have the most basic level.

          1. re: Tommy C

            Yeah, same channel for me in Boston as well. But it doesn't come with the "Prime HD" (which is the basic here) - only with the "Extreme HD" package and above.

      2. I've only seen the Basque episode. It felt like I'd seen a lot of it before, especially the part about the cooking club (though playing the wood drum was new). Besides Batali's series, I've seen Jose Andre's Made in Spain, at least one Bizarre Foods Spain episode, and two (I think) No Reservations episodes. And Jaime Oliver has escaped there.

        2 Replies
        1. re: paulj


          Try Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations episodes on Spain. They're pretty informative if you don't mind him.

          1. re: Aleta


            Sorry, I missed your comment on Anthony Bourdain earlier and ran out of time to delete my comment. Agree with you re: the cooking clubs (something old) and the txalaparta (something new).

        2. Thanks for the heads-up. I don't watch a lot of Saturday night TV and probably would have missed it. I'm game for any show about Spain's food, culture, etc. Chowhound and DVR to the rescue again.

          1. The original comment has been removed