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May 2012 COTM Spanish Month Companion Thread

Please use this thread to post about recipes from any Spanish cookbook EXCEPT for The Food of Spain by Claudia Roden, Moro by Samuel and Samantha Clark, The Food and Wines of Spain, Cocina de Mama, Tapas, and ¡Delicioso! The Regional Cooking of Spain by Penelope Casas (they all have dedicated threads as former/current COTMs). Remember to include the name of the book and page number or the link to an online recipe in your post. ¡Buen Provecho!

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  1. Here's the thread with links to the threads for those four Casas titles: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/524513

    1. Thanks for posting the companion thread BigSal! It promises to be a fun month!

      1. Thanks for posting this thread Big Sal. I'm really excited to cook from my Spanish books. I recently purchased Seasonal Spanish Food: 125 Simple Recipes to Bring Home the Flavors of Spain by Jose Pizarro and Vicky Bennison and I've tabbed so many recipes, it seems like a terrific book and I'm keen to give it a test drive.

        Conversely, I went through Roden's Food of Spain page by page (no small feat!) on Sunday night and was surprised how few dishes really appealed to me. I expected far more tapas dishes and was gemerally underwhelmed by what I did find. While I did have much greater success w Moro, many of the dishes I tabbed were the Eastern Mediterranean/North African style offereings and while I look forward to making them some day, this month I have a strong preference for Spanish cuisine so I expect I'll be making good use of this thread. I can't wait to get cooking!

        1. "The Book of Tapas" Phaidon book, Simone & Ines Ortega. Under "Egg and Cheese Tapas" "Cold" "Hard-Boiled Eggs with Black Olives" p. 139.

          Since I've not eaten deviled eggs since 1984 (as best I recall) and I had about 3 dozen good eggs on hand, I decided to use 6 (instead of 4 that the recipe suggested).

          The taste is definitely different from a regular deviled egg. I did have good ingredients on hand, so it was as good as it could be. I really liked the capers in sherry vinegar, which didn't even have to be rinsed they were so good. Certainly didn't want to drain them!

          1. Revuelto Con Ajetes, Setas y Gambas (Eggs Scrambled with Green Garlic, Mushrooms and Shrimp) from My Kitchen in Spain by Janet Mendel p. 121


            Fresh green garlic (ajetes) is available now at the market and this looked like a good way to use them. Chopped green garlic is sautéed until softened, add sliced wild mushrooms (we used oyster mushrooms, morels and hedgehog mushrooms) and sauté 5 minutes. Next add shrimp for a minute then add eggs and scramble until done. Serve with toast. We enjoyed this simple dish quite a bit. Scrambled eggs, shrimp and mushrooms infused with the gentle taste of the green garlic. A simply satisfying meal.

            Ensalada Mixta (Mixed Salad) from The Cuisines of Spain by Teresa Barrenechea p. 89

            I had forgotten how much I like this salad. Simple ingredients come together to make a nice first course or a light meal. There are many variations of this salad, but we made ours with butter lettuce, tomatoes, thinly sliced onion, green olives, drained tuna in olive oil (good tuna really makes this salad), sliced cucumbers, boiled egg wedges and white asparagus pieces (cojonudos). The salad is dressed with a Sherry vinaigrette. In Spain, the salad was served undressed with cruets of oil and vinegar and you’d dress the salad to your liking with oil and wine vinegar (not Sherry vinegar).

              Asparagus with Serrano Ham and Manchego Cheese, Pg. 41
              (Espárragos con Jamón Serrano y Queso Manchego)


              Although this is a tapa I used it as a side dish for a garlic chicken recipe we made from The Food of Spain by Claudia Roden. I won't go into details as the exact recipe is given in the link I provided by Daisy herself, bless her heart. The only deviation I had to make is to substitute prosciutto for the Serrano ham since I haven't found it locally yet. The rest of the recipe was followed as written. We liked the combination of asparagus, ham and cheese. it's quick and easy to make and there's leftovers that I think will be perfect chopped up and added to scrambled eggs.

              8 Replies
              1. re: Gio

                Hey, thanks for posting this - I believe I got this book as a gift, and I had totally forgotten about it. Will look through it and see what looks good. Most of the month will just be Lulu and me, so any cooking done after next week will have to be something easy and fun to do together. But it is definitely fun to realize I have a book that means I can play along on this thread.

                1. re: LulusMom

                  You're welcome, LLM... Although the book contains the cuisines of several Latin American countries Martinez references several strictly Spanish recipes. On the whole I do like the sound of just about everything the book has to offer and plan to cook many of them.... even though they're not all Spanish.

                  1. re: Gio

                    I found it in my pile and hope to get a chance to look it over tonight or tomorrow. Yay! Thanks Gio.

                2. re: Gio

                  Interesting. I am in Puerto Rico right now and have been cooking a number of things from this book. I am on the Southwest coast of the island and finding decent ingredients is not for the faint of heart. When I return to the states and a faster internet connection, I should do a thread with all of these recipes.

                  I can assure you that there are NO asparagus to be found and good quality ham is difficult.

                  The one thing I have found is the most delicious garlic. It is from the States, but is totally different than anything I have eaten there. The garlic is very juicy and has a strong garlic flavor, but also has some sweetness. Very appealing and I am using it whenever possible.

                  1. re: smtucker

                    Hi SMT, glad to hear from you. I knew you had Daisy's book but didn't know if you'd be able to post reports from your vacation home. Starting a Daisy Martinez thread when you return would be great since you'd have been cooking with native/local produce. I've only chosen recipes from the book that have a Spanish reference, more or less, but I'd love to cook the other recipes as well. .

                    I wonder if that garlic you've been using is green garlic. The description you provided sounds similar. Hope you're having a good time.

                    1. re: smtucker

                      Echoing Gio's interest in starting a Daisy thread when you return smtucker. I'd love to hear of your adventures in your Puerto Rican kitchen. I ordered this book after reading Gio's posts this month which really piqued my interest. (thanks Gio!!). Hoping you're having a fabulous time. I'd love to visit Puerto Rico one day!

                      1. re: smtucker

                        The "States" must be shipping good quality garlic elsewhere. The only garlic I find everywhere is the garlic from Gilroy, CA, which for reasons I will not go into, we cannot eat, nor the already peeled cloves garlic in plastic quart containers. We grew our garlic the last two years and are now out - two days ago I purchased garlic at the local grocery market, it was $2.99 for two small-ish bulbs. Enjoy the garlic!

                        1. re: smtucker

                          I'm also interested in a Cooking with Daisy thread.

                          That aside, I hope you're having a fabulous vacation, procurement difficulties aside. I've always heard that side of the island is especially beautiful.

                      2. Sometimes I resign myself to just doing the breads and desserts from ethnic (to me in Utah USA) cookbooks. The right ingredients for main/meat/seafood dishes are not available, or too pricey, or I just know the SO will not be amused. So the 2 egg dishes so far in this thread have turned on a light-- of course, egg dishes! Thank you both.

                        7 Replies
                        1. re: blue room

                          I completely understand. I have a problem, too; namely, that there are so many foods that I have discontinued using in the last 5 years that it is hard to find a recipe.

                          1. re: Rella

                            I am having a similar issue. My copy of Culinaria Spain arrived today - and there are many recipes containing main ingredients I don't eat - or am afraid to try.

                            1. re: Blythe spirit

                              The Culinaria series focuses on regional specialties, so finding recipes that use more common items is harder. Plus it has a high text to recipe ratio. They are more for learning than cooking.

                              The Hermes House picture cookbook, 'The Complete Spanish Cookbook'
                              by Pepita Aris, is easier to cook from without access to exotic ingredients.

                          2. re: blue room

                            blue room- I love that you make desserts and breads. I am not much of a baker, but am thinking about baking this month. I think you'll find that a lot of Spanish classics do not require expensive or exotic ingredients. Maybe an empanda de atun might be a fun one for you. You can use your baking skills on the dough and the filling is tuna, bell peppers, tomatoes, onions and sometimes eggs and/or capers. Or champiñones al ajillo (garlic sauteed mushrooms). I also love the tortilla española. Simply potatoes, onions and eggs, but so delicious. Ensaladilla rusa (Spanish style potato salad). Croquetas are another idea (I love egg croquetas- bechamel and chopped boiled egg covered in breadcrumbs and fried...what's not to like?) Don't give up!!

                            1. re: BigSal

                              I see so much now in "The New Spanish Table" --
                              "Eggs over Smoky Bread Hash", or "Tortilla de Patatas, Spain's Egg Masterpiece". I'm sure I'll purchase at least a little fancy ham of some kind before the month's over, but that's okay.
                              The dessert section is intriguing too, it won't be a second choice. And it makes me smile every time I see the very Spanish-sounding name "Anya von Bremzen" on the cover.

                              1. re: blue room

                                This Spanish book is Anya's latest and perhaps best known cookbooks. But her first was on Russian cooking, the next on SE Asia (Pacific). I have about a half dozen Spanish cookbooks, and have checked out others from the library. Still The New Spanish Table is one the most useful

                                1. re: paulj

                                  I agree, paulj. I received this book a couple of days ago, and even though I have several Spanish cookbooks, this book seems more practical for me - which is certainly not an endorsement for more experienced cooks than me.

                                  But still, I like the recipes presented that seem to be less complicated - overall.

                          3. Grilled Asparagus with Honey and Sherry Vinegar – p. 373 - The New Spanish Table by Anya von Bremzen

                            I’d completely forgotten about a bunch of asparagus I picked up at the market last Friday so when I saw they were still salvageable, I hit EYB for a suitable recipe. With all ingredients in my pantry, this dish hit the top of my list.

                            Super quick and easy to pull together. Asparagus are washed, trimmed and tossed in EVOO prior to grilling. Meanwhile a dressing is made by combining honey, EVOO, sherry vinegar, salt & pepper. Once the asparagus have been grilled you simply drizzle the dressing over top and give them a quick sprinkle of Maldon salt. This was terrific. A wonderful blend of sweet, salty and tart flavours that worked perfectly with the sweet smoky flavours of the grilled veggies. This is a keeper! We absolutely loved it.

                            1. THE NEW SPANISH TABLE by Anya von Bremzen
                              Boiled Potatoes and Green Beans with Garlic, Pg. 324


                              A very tasty finished dish that accompanied a simple roast chicken that came together for a dinner of the comfort food sort: lots of garlic (I increased from 2 cloves to 4), waxy potatoes, green beans, and a good Spanish extra virgin olive oil. I don't have to go into details since the recipe is in the link I provided. Although the recipe directions call for cooling the cooked and dressed vegetables for several minutes I served it warm. We liked it and it's something that can very well go with many other mains....

                              1. THE NEW SPANISH TABLE p. 174
                                Galician Tuna Empanada with Melting Onions...made with
                                Olive Oil and Saffron Pastry

                                First I made the dough, which is perfect for this empanada--it is certainly rich (olive oil and butter,) and behaves when you roll it out, only needs to rise 20 minutes, and is sturdy enough to contain a big rectangle of filling. (The smaller handheld empanadas are more common in South America, according to the author.) The color (pic) of the raw dough is deep yellow -- saffron is the reason.
                                Then the filling -- "...tuna...with... onions" isn't really accurate. There is twice as much bell pepper as onion. Also garlic, more saffron, tomato, paprika. . This is cooked slowly until it is very soft --"jamlike" is the word used. Green olives and tuna are added, salt and black pepper, then spread filling between the rolled-out dough sheets, and bake.
                                Very nice! Reminiscent of a pan bagnat. We liked it piping hot, though room temperature I think is traditional. I made a half recipe.

                                29 Replies
                                1. re: blue room

                                  Sounds and looks delicious! This is on my list. I'm curious to see how this compares to Penelope's. I like the filling so much that sometimes I make the filling without the dough. This one has the addition of saffron, pimenton, and olives to add another dimension to the dish. Thanks for posting!

                                  1. re: BigSal

                                    I looked up the Penelope Casas recipe for tuna-red pepper pie, and yes it is much simpler than this one. I could not do without the olives!

                                  2. re: blue room

                                    The empanada dough from that book is remarkably easy to work with, due I think due to the amount of oil. I've used if with a pork filling, and also a Russian-Alaskan salmon pie.

                                    1. re: paulj

                                      Yes, very glad I discovered this dough--I know I'll use it again and again.

                                      1. re: blue room

                                        Would you mind posting the dough recipe here.? I'd love to try this with a filling I make often to serve on sopes. The filling is 1 lb. ground sirloin, 20% fat, browned, 1 onion, also browned, a few garlic cloves, smashed and sautéed,3-4 tomatoes, diced and added to the mixture until they break down, a handful of aborio rice, sautéed into the oil from the meat, then a little liquid is added (water or broth); a chopped hardboiled egg is added at the very end, along with some chopped parsley. The filling freezes well and is great in tacos, sopes, and savory pastries. Serve it alongside a salsa of chopped tomatoes, s and p, a dish olive oil, a squeeze of lemon and 1 smashed garlic that is put into flavor it and then quickly removed.

                                        1. re: dkennedy

                                          Sounds tasty and substantial! -- I'll definitely use this dough in the future. I've only made it once but I trust it.

                                          Here it is:

                                          ..Olive Oil and Saffron Pastry..

                                          1 teaspoon active dry yeast

                                          1/2 teaspoon sugar

                                          2/3 cup lukewarm water (105 to 115 degrees Fahrenheit)

                                          4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter (melt it)

                                          1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

                                          1 large egg, beaten

                                          1 large pinch of saffron threads, toasted, pulverized in a mortar, and steeped in 3 tablespoons of very hot water ( thought I could crush those tiny tendrils with the back of a spoon after soaking, but no--they are tough little twigs! You really do need a mortar/pestle. I was not sure how to toast them -- I just let them get hot in a pan, I'm afraid.)

                                          2 scant teaspoons salt

                                          3 1/2 to 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

                                          Stir the yeast and sugar and warm water in a big bowl, wait about 10 minutes until it's foamy. With whisk, mix in butter and oil, egg, saffron and salt. Mix this well with wooden spoon, and then add 3 1/2 cups flour a cup at a time, stir well after each addition.

                                          Knead on floured surface about 5 minutes, using the remaining 1/4 cup flour if you need to cut the stickiness. Divide into 2 balls--one a little bigger than the other (the bottom will be crimped up over the top, so it needs a little more surface area.) Put in oiled bowl and cover.

                                          After the 2 balls sit for 20 minutes (rising just slightly), you can roll them out, fill, and bake.

                                          1. re: blue room

                                            Thank you Blue Room. Does it say how many pastries each ball will yield? I am just trying to get a sense of how large the empanadas are suppose to be. Are you making one large pie or several small ones? The picture leases me to believe it is one large one. The recipe I cited above is a filling for small, appetizer size pastries, though I am sure it would work in a large dough as well.

                                            1. re: dkennedy

                                              Sorry, I should have included that information! The larger ball is rolled out to a 19" by 11" rectangle for the bottom. The ball for the top is slightly smaller -- I'd say maybe 1/2 to 1 inch smaller all around the edge -- so you can fold up the bottom over the top.
                                              (I made just half a recipe -- the recipe I gave you will make *double* what my picture shows.) Also, I should have spread the filling more evenly--no need to heap it up in the middle.

                                              1. re: dkennedy

                                                Her empanda recipes are written for a 11x17 baking sheet, double crusted pie.

                                                1. re: paulj

                                                  Thank you. It is on my list of things to try.

                                      2. re: blue room

                                        blue room - I'm starting to take an informal survey...
                                        What type of paprika did you use: sweet, bittersweet, hot, smoked, or unsmoked?
                                        I'm shopping for paprika this weekend, thinking about the various types, and I'd love to hear impressions.

                                        1. re: L.Nightshade

                                          Sweet smoked is the most distinctive and versatile paprika (pimenton) for Spanish cooking. It has the unique smokiness, without heat. If I also want heat I can add some other hot pepper source (e.g. hot sauce). 'bittersweet' is in effect, medium-hot.

                                          Unsmoked sweet paprika adds a lot of color, but not a lot of flavor. It is also similar to ordinary paprika (which may be Spanish) or Hungarian paprika.

                                          1. re: paulj

                                            I'm on a paprika shopping trip this weekend, I plan for sure to pick up sweet smoked, I'm not so sure if I need others, or which others I need. I have two (unmarked) containers of paprika, that fail to move me. They are bright/brick red and smell peppery, but not smoky. I assume that if they were smoked I could tell. They taste like peppers, but not necessarily hot.

                                            1. re: L.Nightshade

                                              At one point I thought pimenton was always smoked, but then I bought some 'Pimenton de Murcia', which, while good, does not have the distinctive smokiness of 'Pimenton ahumado'. 'Pimenton de la vera' is a good smoked paprika stating point.

                                              If you don't already have smoked, then yes, you should get some. The only disadvantage is that a beginner is tempted to over use it, either thinking that all Spanish dishes should have its flavor, or using too much in a dish.

                                              1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                I've been having similar paprika questions and decided to pick up sweet smoked and leave it at that. There is a spanish specialty store quite close to my office (Despana) and they stock "pimenton de la vera" in sweet, hot, and bittersweet varieties. When I inquired whether the paprika was smoked or not, the manager said, "it's all smoked." I concluded that since they don't stock unsmoked paprika, smoked would be called for in most applications. If I need unsmoked, I will use my bulk bin paprika, and if I need extra heat, I will add some cayenne. This is a very authentic shop. They have two varieties of whole jamon iberico, which they hand slice - the more expensive variety is $120/lb, and I think a single slice costs around $20. I'm quite curious but I've never been able to bring myself to cough up the dough to try it. They also hand-slice jamon serrano, which is quite good and much more reasonably priced.

                                                1. re: Westminstress

                                                  I think you have the right idea.

                                                  I've heard Jose Andres talk as though all pimenton was smoked, seemingly ignoring Murcia's product

                                                  Is the non smoked Murcia promotional web page

                                                  Even La Tienda adds to this confusion, having a page for smoked paprika
                                                  but including a Murcia item (described as 'sweet' as opposed to 'sweet smoked')

                                                  1. re: paulj

                                                    I wrote about "Pimentón, in Translation" on a recent blog. Here's the lowdown on this ruddy-good spice: Pimentón is made from dried red peppers which, depending on the cultivar, can be sweet, bittersweet or hot (picante). After drying, the peppers are milled—ground—to a fine powder. The most used peppers are the choricero, elongated, and the ñora or bola, a sort of mini bell pepper, about the size of a plum. Both are sweet to bittersweet.

                                                    Pimentón is produced both in Murcia, in eastern Spain, and in the La Vera region of Extremadura in western Spain.

                                                    In Murcia, in eastern Spain, the hot, dry Mediterranean climate allows the peppers to be sun-dried (or, industrially, dried with hot air). In autumn when the peppers ripen in La Vera, early rains in the Atlantic climate of Extremadura make sun-drying impossible. So, the peppers are smoke-dried 10 to15 days over smouldering chunks of wild holm oak. Both kinds of pimentón are used in making chorizo sausage.

                                                    1. re: spainkitchen

                                                      Fantastic information.
                                                      Thank you.

                                                      I suppose the difference between the smoked-HOT and the smoked-MILD is no more than at what stage the peppers are picked.

                                                      Just wondering if the smoked-HOT could ever be as hot as a cayenne.

                                                      1. re: Rella

                                                        As a powder blended from many peppers there probably is little variation in heat level. From memory of a picante can that I had a while back, I'd estimate its heat level to be similar to Mexican guajillo. Enough heat to notice but not enough to excite a chile-head.

                                                        1. re: Rella

                                                          No, the difference between hot and mild is variety of pepper, as all are picked ripe (red). Hot pimentón is never as hot as cayenne.

                                                          1. re: spainkitchen

                                                            Wow, Spainkitchen, thank you so much for posting this information on "Pimentón, in Translation." I look forward to reading your entire article on your blog.

                                                            1. re: spainkitchen

                                                              Ah ha!! Naively, I would have thought that the peppers used to make hot and/or mild paprika would have come from the very same variety and therefore, the degree of hotness would have been the result of the ripeness.

                                                              Thank you!

                                                              1. re: Rella

                                                                I can't think of a chile where the ripe (red) ones are reliably hotter than the green ones.

                                                                1. re: paulj

                                                                  Thanks. I was always "under the impression" that the red jalapenos were hotter than the green jalapenos. Glad to know that - I guess it's just a difference is the taste of them; sort of like a green bell pepper ripening into a red bell pepper (same species/genus, of course).

                                                2. re: L.Nightshade

                                                  The empanada recipe I used here specifies sweet, not smoked, so I used my supermarket (McCormick) jar. Hardly any flavor at all, like paulj said.

                                                  I also have a little jar I bought especially for this month's COTM -- from Penzeys, smoked Spanish. I see no reason not to use it (sensibly) next time, even if the recipe says not to. It smells/tastes pleasantly mildly smoky. Now I wonder why the flavorless kind is used at all. Maybe some recipe authors say "paprika" and assume you'll know they mean smoked?

                                                  1. re: blue room

                                                    Do you get the cute little tins of smoked paprika in the States - this is my favourite for kitsch value


                                                    1. re: greedygirl

                                                      Here are a couple of examples of Spanish paprika at TJMaxx, which is where I find the Spanish brand of olives I love, Spanish honey, etc.

                                                      One: smoked hot; one smoked mild.

                                                      1. re: Rella

                                                        Most of my pimenton purchases have been from TJ, even the non smoked Murcia one.

                                                      2. re: greedygirl

                                                        Ha -- mine not so picturesque -- all McCormick jars have a little red white & blue logo, and all Penzeys jars a pale yellow/black lettering label.
                                                        Pretty dull I'm afraid.

                                                3. Pan-Fried Paprika Chicken with Mashed Potatoes from Seasonal Spanish Food by José Pizarro p. 130 (half recipe)


                                                  Unpeeled garlic cloves and a bay leaf are cooked in olive oil on low heat for 20 minutes. Discard the bay leaf and set aside the garlic cloves. The boneless, skin-on chicken thighs are cooked in the oil (I used 1 T instead of the 1.5T) and then dry sherry and pimentón picante is added and the dish is simmered for 5 minutes.

                                                  The chicken was succulent and we enjoyed the addition of the smoky, spicy paprika. The garlic flavor was subtle, practically imperceptible in the completed dish, but the addition of the garlic confit on the side was nice. We regretted not making the garlic mashed potatoes (instead we grilled up some asparagus) and would try it the next time as it would have only added more garlicky goodness.

                                                  3 Replies
                                                  1. re: BigSal

                                                    Asparagus AND potatoes, not instead of ..
                                                    I always notice you try for a a healthy table!

                                                    1. re: BigSal

                                                      Big Sal - for my paprika survey...
                                                      What type of paprika did you use? Your description sounds like you might have used hot, smoked paprika.

                                                      1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                        I used smoked paprika (pimentón de la Vera) for this recipe. Generally speaking, I use sweet smoked paprika the most (although I do have the unsmoked kind from Murcia) next hot, and bittersweet very infrequently. In Seasonal Spanish Food, José Pizarro indicates one should use smoked paprika in all of his recipes. In the New Spanish Table, I noticed that Anya Von Bremzen uses receipes that call for both and specifies whether one should use smoked or unsmoked. Teresa Barrenechea in the Cuisines of Spain says that the smoked paprika "has a characteristic aroma and a deep rich flavor that are not present in pimentón made from sun dried peppers."

                                                    2. Eggs over Smoky Bread Hash ... THE NEW SPANISH TABLE, p.150

                                                      Haha yeah, it's "bread hash" if you don't count the chorizo, prosciutto, and pancetta! But it is a fine fine flavorful dish. I've only known prosciutto from draped cantaloupe, this is diced and browned with diced pancetta (smoky bacon) and crumbled chorizo (garlic/chili sausage).
                                                      Additional flavor provided by sliced fried garlic and smoky Spanish paprika. When that has fried up (just minutes), you brown *slightly* dampened torn bread in the same wonderful-by-now pan. Mix the bread and meats, and at this point halved seedless green grapes go in. Just a few, but I had none. If I were serving this as a brunch dish I'd definitely go for the grapes--the color of course, but also to cut the saltiness with bursts of sweet grape-- plumped golden raisins might work too.
                                                      Atop this an egg -- poached in my cheater poaching pan -- the recipe says fried or poached.
                                                      It is so good! The egg stirred in is important, otherwise it might be just a tiny less moist than perfect. This would be a brunch natural, or a breakfast (unnaturally sumptuous.)

                                                      1. I went shopping at Fresh Market this morning.
                                                        I purchased a penascal estate 2009 castilla y leon tempranillo-inexpensive but tasty
                                                        I also purchased a sherry vinegar columela solero 30 vinagre de juarez reserva and asmall round of capricho de cabra

                                                        1. I also purchased paprika from www.kalustyan.com
                                                          they have a good selection of paprika,sherry vinegar and lentils, etc

                                                          1. Just an FYI,
                                                            My local Italian market began carrying Spanish imported tuna - Conservas Ortiz El Velero Bonito del Norte en actors de oliva. This is a really delicious canned tuna - comparable, if not superior, to the Italian canned tuna.

                                                            22 Replies
                                                            1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                              Blythe, I also picked up some canned Spanish tuna, but I didn't find many recipes in Roden I wanted to use my tuna for. What are you doing with your tuna?


                                                              1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                Just stopping by to say that I made tuna empanada from FoS (angelita's tuna pie - p. 216) for dinner club Spanish dinner and everyone loved it.

                                                                1. re: herby

                                                                  Ah, that sounds delish! I remember making a canned salmon pastry of some sort from Casas...I'll bet the tuna one would be fantastic, too!

                                                                  I'll check it out.


                                                                2. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                  Last night I just had it mixed with some mayo and had it on potato chips - this is my go-to when I'm too tired to cook - which I'm embarrassed to admit in the presence of so many accomplished COTMers.
                                                                  But I had seen a tapas recipe somewhere ( can't remember where at the moment) for tuna stuffed mini-peppers that looked delicious. I'm excited to try it because that is the best canned tuna I've had. I'll post back when I've got a definite plan/recipe in mind.

                                                                  1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                    AMFT - p. 174 has Tuna Packaged Piquitto Peppers, could that be it? It is on my long list of "things to make":)

                                                                    1. re: herby

                                                                      Oh, I loved that dish. I made it with leftover tuna confit, but I'm pretty sure it called for canned tuna. Good quality canned tuna would make all the difference!

                                                                      1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                        I enjoyed this dish too and made it with Spanish tuna (bonito del norte).

                                                                        1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                          I know it's been a while since you posted that at


                                                                          great pictures, making me go back to this impossible hunt for piquillo peppers at a somewhat reasonable price when it includes $8+/- for a jar of them. I know about La Tienda, but I sure would like to see at least one jar in my life somewhere on the shelves, but I don't get out much anymore, so it's gonna have to be internet if I do get them. This has got to be my 'what do you want to eat for your last meal' food w/my stock of Ortiz jarred tuna - how I love it!

                                                                          1. re: Rella

                                                                            Trader Joes carries piquillo peppers sometimes if you have one nearby.

                                                                            1. re: jen kalb

                                                                              I'll be going in that area in about 2 weeks. I've not been to TJ's in a couple of years, but I'll go there for them! Do you know, by chance, if it is a TJ's brand, but from Spain? No matter, I'm going to go anyway.

                                                                              Many thanks!

                                                                              1. re: Rella

                                                                                I believe they are from South America, as are the several brands at my local supermarket (none of which are even close to $8), though which country I don't rightly remember.

                                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                  The last brand of peppers that were actually from Spain that I bought were this brand, even though they have a Italian company name (Antica Italia,) they are actually from Spain.

                                                                                  (I can't seem to get the picture url to show up here., but it the Antica Roasted Red Peppers jar $6.95.)

                                                                                  I take pictures of a lot of food brought into my abode, document where I've bought it - not easy here finding things. I must've taken a picture of the back label to remind myself that they are from Spain (and not the usual Peru).

                                                                                  However, these jarred peppers from Spain are definitely NOT PEQUILLO peppers as they are huge!

                                                                                  I WANT PEQUILLOS! :-))

                                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                                    In my experience, piquillo peppers are more likely to come in cans than jars,

                                                                                    1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                      Here in the US, I've only ever seen them in jars. T

                                                                              2. re: jen kalb

                                                                                While TJ has had roast red peppers from Spain for a long time (and still do), they only carried piquillos from Peru for a couple of years. It's been a year or two since they dropped those.

                                                                                TJ also had Spanish Pickled Guindilla Peppers for a while.

                                                                              3. re: Rella

                                                                                Surprisingly, I found them at my local, very suburban, middle of the road, supermarket. By the pickles and such. So don't confine your search to specialty shoppes!

                                                                            2. re: herby

                                                                              Herby , is AMFT the Greenspan book? I don't have that one but may check it out if it has this recipe :-) . I appreciate your thoughtful reply.
                                                                              At this point, I'm thinking I may have imagined that I saw this recipe. There is a stuffed piquillo pepper recipe in the Barrenechea book, which I must have confused with a recipe in an unrelated book.I had recently ordered a copy of Mozza, and that DOES
                                                                              have such a recipe. So, I may end up using my Spanish tuna in an Italian recipe, and
                                                                              then not even get to report on it :-(
                                                                              Nevertheless, the tuna is outstanding. I had another can of it tonight, over a simple salad - it's really delicious.

                                                                              1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                Yes, Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan. Here is on-line recipe:

                                                                                Please tell us which one you end up making!

                                                                            3. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                              About the tuna -- how/why is the tuna imported from Spain or Italy better than Chicken of the Sea, Bumblebee, etc. (USA brands)? I understand the imported tuna is often packed in olive oil, but the *tuna itself* is a fish from the sea, and would not be better quality, would it? Do the Spanish and Italian kinds have flavoring in them *other than the oil*?

                                                                              1. re: blue room

                                                                                The tuna I bought (Tonnino brand) is packed with oregano in olive oil. It is a glass jar filled with fillets of Yellowfin tuna and goes for $6.98 for 6.7 oz. I haven't tried it yet but I am hoping it is a step above the tuna I usually buy form TJs which, btw, is also pretty good.

                                                                                1. re: blue room

                                                                                  Blue Room,
                                                                                  The Spanish imported tuna I bought doesn't have additional flavorings like oregano. It is just very high quality - both in taste and texture. Very noticeably better than your average supermarket brand, IMHO.

                                                                                  1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                    I agree. So much better than the run of the mill tuna in a can. It is simply tuna and olive oil. The words silky and buttery come to mind. The ventresca (tuna belly) is an even more delicious and expensive treat.

                                                                          2. The Clarisa Nuns Banana and Hazelnut Tart ... THE NEW SPANISH TABLE, p. 405
                                                                            Now for something a little different. This is a baked banana tart in a shell of puff pastry. Very rustic looking here because of my lack of puff pastry skills, but this tart is full of flavor. First roll out, freeze, (for shape I think) and bake the shell. A wonderful cooked custard goes in to it first -- made of pineapple juice, lemon, sugar, butter, and egg yolks. Top that with sliced banana (I used 2 large ones for an 8 inch tart.) And then a mix of toasted (very important for flavor!) ground hazelnuts, brown sugar, flour, butter, and a little cinnamon. Bake for about 20 minutes -- what a happy medley this is. Very glad I tried it.

                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                            1. Squid with caramelized onions (Calamares encebollados) from Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America by José Andrés and Richard Wolffe p. 146


                                                                              This is a simple recipe with tasty results. Caramelized onions and squid (cooked separately) are mixed together with a splash of wine and a sprinkle of parsley. The pairing of caramelized onions and squid is quite nice. I saw a Penelope Casas recipes where she does something similar with clams that I’ll try soon.

                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                              1. re: BigSal

                                                                                Big Sal- If you see this, I'm planning a tapas followed by paella meal for some company this week, so grazing through this thread for some ideas. Anyway, my question is did you ever have a chance to try the Casas clams/Onions recipe?

                                                                              2. Ensalada de Naranja y Aguacate (Orange and Avocado Salad), page 107, The Complete Spanish Cookbook by Jacki Passmore.

                                                                                This is one of two salads I made to accompany a lamb dish from Moro. There's not much to making it, but it's a winner on the taste front. Oranges are peeled and thickly sliced, and placed on a dish with cubed avocado. The dressing of scallion, chopped olives, fresh herbs (I used parsley and basil), olive oil, salt, and pepper is poured over. That's all there is to it! It was a bright contrast to our lamb dish, and the olive/orange/avocado combination hit all the right notes. I'll be keeping this one in mind whenever the menu calls for an easy yet interesting salad.

                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                                  That's one irresistable salad--beautiful!

                                                                                  1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                                    My latest requisition from the library has been the Jacki Passmore book. So far more browsing than cooking, but I already see lots of great stuff that we want to try. Last night I did a riff on the Brochetas de Solomillo a la Riojana (tenerloin brochettes), pg 226, using an whole rib steak in place of the tenderloin kabobs, and the results were fabulous.

                                                                                  2. Amanida de Faves a la Menta (Fava or Lima Bean Salad with Cured Ham and Mint), page 56, The Catalan Country Kitchen by Marimar Torres.

                                                                                    This was the second salad for our lamb dinner. I haven't seen fresh favas around, so I opted for the easy alternative of frozen limas. The beans are cooked and cooled, then tossed with finely shredded romaine, julienned prosciutto, and strips of fresh mint. The salad is dressed with olive oil and sherry vinegar, with dijon mustard, salt, and pepper. Great flavor in this salad, with the kick of the mustard, the brightness of the mint, and the salty goodness of the prosciutto. Eating it I could hardly believe that lima beans were my most hated food as a child!

                                                                                    8 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                                      The recipe for fava bean salad with mint also appears in Coleman Andrews' CATALAN CUISINE. He credits it to the great chef Josep Mercader. I included the recipe in my own MY KITCHEN IN SPAIN cookbook, not knowing where it came from. Today I am making it with fresh favas from the garden. With, of course, serrano ham, not prosciutto!

                                                                                      1. re: spainkitchen

                                                                                        Great to have you with us, Spainkitchen...
                                                                                        You're allowed to post your blog address on your Profile page, you know.

                                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                                          Thanks, Gio. I just put the blog address on my Profile page. Wasn't sure of etiquette. But, I shouldn't put the link in my Chow posts?

                                                                                          1. re: spainkitchen

                                                                                            Welcome Janet! I recently made one of your recipes: Revuelto Con Ajetes, Setas y Gambas.

                                                                                            1. re: BigSal

                                                                                              Thanks, BigSal. It was a link to that recipe that drew me into Chowhound pages! Delighted to join a discussion about Spanish food and cookbooks.

                                                                                              1. re: spainkitchen

                                                                                                Ah, now I know what Big Sal meant by "green garlic" in her post about the lunch treat Revuelto Con etc. Your blog explained it. A new resource, for sure.

                                                                                                1. re: blue room

                                                                                                  blue room: glad to be informative about ingredients in the Spanish kitchen.

                                                                                            2. re: spainkitchen

                                                                                              I believe you may post your address at the end of a post, as I've seen many others do, JM. Anyway I'm just glad you're here to clarify questions we might have regarding Spanish cuisine...

                                                                                              BTW: My Kitchen in Spain is indexed on Eat Your Books, a web site many of us belong to where we list cookbooks we own in order to find recipes we might like to cook, etc.


                                                                                      2. Tortilla de Patatas According to Ferran Adria ... THE NEW SPANISH TABLE, p. 143

                                                                                        I couldn't help trying this, too easy, and "has become a great hit with Spanish home cooks."
                                                                                        This was not on the menu at El Bulli, but F. Adria adds potato chips ( not thick, not flavored, just plain) to beaten egg and makes a truly tasty potato & egg dish. (What is the Spanish word for "voila!" ?) According to this cookbook Spaniards can make a tortilla blindfolded--I looked--softened some chopped onion in olive oil, soaked the chips in the egg for about 7 minutes, and then poured this over the onion, let cook 'til almost done, flip it over, finish cooking. The idea behind it is that people tend to fry their potatoes crisp anyway for a Tortilla de Patatas. I made just enough for myself (2 eggs, one ounce of chips--a Big handful). These are served hot/warm/cold, perfect lunch or snack. The texture is very pleasing-- potato-like. I would never have known I wasn't eating sliced cooked potatoes.
                                                                                        Not much to see, but I took a pic anyhow.

                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: blue room

                                                                                          Jose Andres also has this tortilla with potato chips, named in one of his books, for his favorite Washington DC area brand of chips.


                                                                                          1. re: blue room

                                                                                            I have to try this blue room, I've just finish dinner and you post has me craving this!

                                                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                              Oh wait 'til you're hungry, it'll be worth it. The recipe paulj has linked to upthread is almost exactly the same as I used. Important to use plain potato chips, not "kettle cooked" or anything fancy.

                                                                                          2. Tortas de Aceite ... Anise and sesame seed cookies
                                                                                            from "The Cooking of Spain and Portugal" (Time-Life Books, Foods of the World series)

                                                                                            A disappointment, these are unusual and I hoped they'd be special. Olive oil is made hot, lemon peel, sesame seeds and anise seeds go into the hot oil which is then left to cool. Get rid of the (now fried) lemon peel, pour the oil and seeds into a mixing bowl. Stir in sugar (not much) and white wine (dry) and grated lemon and orange peel. Mix in flour and cinnamon. Roll into balls, flatten, bake. IMO, there isn't enough of any one flavor. So you get a vaguely herbal sort of not sweet cookie. The texture is very nice--shattery--and good crunch from the seeds. I'm always on the lookout for a *new* Christmas cookie, but I don't think I'd try these again.
                                                                                            (The nuts on top are pistachios though it called for almonds.) I wonder if anyone has a better knowledge of how these should be.

                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: blue room

                                                                                              I've had modest success replicating this style of tortas de aceite

                                                                                              The dough is oily enough that it rolls out quite easily, more so than the typical flour tortilla dough.

                                                                                              1. re: paulj

                                                                                                Thank you, paulj -- seems to be a "cookie" with a LOT of variations.

                                                                                            2. DAISY COOKS! By Daisy Martinez
                                                                                              Sausage, Onion, Pepper, Potato Roast, Pg. 206
                                                                                              (Asado de Longaniza, Cebolla, Pimentos e Papas)

                                                                                              This was a wonderful melding of flavors that produced a flavorful finished dish. I took a few liberties with the directions of the recipe but used all the original ingredients.

                                                                                              The ingredients: Sausages - I used spicy Italian, white potatoes & Spanish onion - sliced in thin rounds, chopped bell peppers - I used 1 large red and 1 large green, S & P, Spanish EVOO, dried oregano, chopped cilantro. We grilled the sausages. All the vegetables were placed in a large baking sheet and mixed with the all the seasonings except the cilantro. They were roasted in a pre-heated 425F oven for 40 minutes then garnished with chopped cilantro.

                                                                                              The vegetables were served with the grilled sausages and Spinach with [Pine Nuts and] Raisins, page 136.

                                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: Gio

                                                                                                After reading your write-up I realize more than ever that I have been automatically writing-off potato recipes since we not longer use them, but I must stop doing that because I almost always now have yuca (yucca) which certainly I can substitute in this recipe and probably many more in Latin cooking. I also almost always keep on hand HOT ITALIAN sausage which I have grilled, frozen in packages, and ready-to-go for any recipe. It is my to-go sausage, as the chorizo taste is not my favorite (God-knows-I've-tried).

                                                                                                BTW, for those who are interested, the pages in my book for these two recipes, are a little different, p. 206, and p. 230. My book's ISBN: 1-4013-0160-6

                                                                                                Another question, perhaps for another post/thread, or maybe have already been answered: I am one of those persons who have bitter-mouth from pine nuts (about 3 days' worth), and wondering if anyone has found a substitute that will not be too far-afield for any recipe calling for pine-nuts. Gio's recipe here is a recipe that would IMO call for pine-nuts, so would anyone have a substitute (instead of 'just-leave-it out) for pine-nuts, even in this recipe. Thanks.

                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                  Hi Rella. Here's a web site I found that explains what Pine Mouth Syndrome (PNS) is.


                                                                                                  I don't suffer from PNS usually but sometimes a certain batch does have that bitter taste. As for substituting, here's a quote from the Cook's Thesaurus site:
                                                                                                  "Substitutes: walnuts (this is a common variation in pesto) OR almonds (this is a common variation in pesto) OR hazelnuts (this also works in pesto) OR cashews (raw, unsalted) OR peanuts (unsalted) OR sunflower seeds."


                                                                                                  1. re: Gio

                                                                                                    Thanks. I think for me, walnuts in this particular recipe might be my answer - as I make pesto w/English walnuts.

                                                                                                    But, - hmm, I've never tried almonds in pesto, I should not rule it out. Almonds are soo good for you. Next time I'll give it a try. Thanks

                                                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                                                      Have alway's used almonds in my pesto came out good everytime.
                                                                                                      Anyone see a shrimp in green sauce recipe in the spanish book???

                                                                                              2. DAISY COOKS! By Daisy Martinez
                                                                                                Spinach with [Pine Nuts and] Raisins, Pg. 130
                                                                                                (Espanacas al Estilo Daisy)

                                                                                                Each of the COTMs has a recipe for this ubiquitous dish but since I already had Daisy's book out for the Sausage, Onion, Pepper, Potato Roast on page 206 I thought I'd make her version which is like all the others I've ever seen but never made. As usual I had to omit the pine nuts but as an after thought I won't do that again. I'm not supposed to eat whole nuts but can have ground nuts, sooo... in future I'll grind them and use as a garnish or incorporate that into a recipe as needed. BTW: I thought others had already made this but I couldn't find any reports...

                                                                                                The recipe is certainly simple enough: Heat oil, slice garlic, add to pan (along w/pine nuts) , cook till colored. Rinse and prep spinach, add to same pan with water still clinging to leaves. Cook till spinach is wilted but still bright green. Toss with S & P and hydrated raisins. Serve. Daisy sprinkles the finished dish with sherry vinegar... I didn't. Earthy and bright tasting, slightly metallic... we liked it!

                                                                                                8 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: Gio

                                                                                                  I live in LA where we have a wonderful, unpretentious, Tapas Bar (no small feat in La-la land), called Cobras and Matadors. I have been going there for years and one of my favorite tapas is a Pan-Fried Lentil dish that is served warm. Here is my closest approximation of the recipe. Try it this month as an accompaniment to any of your other Tapa based meals.

                                                                                                  Cobra and Matador's Inspired Pan-Fried Lentils


                                                                                                  1 cup small black lentils
                                                                                                  2 cups water
                                                                                                  1 teaspoon salt
                                                                                                  5 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
                                                                                                  4 green onions, thinly sliced
                                                                                                  2 oz pancetta, finely chopped
                                                                                                  1 cup dry sherry
                                                                                                  splash sherry vinegar
                                                                                                  2 Tablespoons honey

                                                                                                  Place lentils in salted water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 15 minutes, until not quite tender. Drain thoroughly and set aside.

                                                                                                  Using same heavy bottomed pot, heat 2 Tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add pancetta. Cook until crispy. Turn the heat up to medium-high. Add the remaining 3 Tablespoons of olive oil, and lentils. Allow the lentils start to crisp up. When just about ready to serve, add the green onions.

                                                                                                  Meanwhile, In a separate pan, cook sherry over medium high heat until reduced by half. Add honey and cook for about 1 more minute, stirring sauce constantly. You may also want to add a splash of vinegar (sherry or white wine vinegar) to give the dish that finished taste.

                                                                                                  Pour the glaze over the lentils, and toss well, making sure the lentils are evenly coated with the glaze. Serve immediately.

                                                                                                  1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                    DK... How did you know I was looking for a different lentil recipe? Thanks very much...!

                                                                                                    1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                      I spent a year living in LA back in 2002-2003. I used to love that place! I had forgotten all about it until I saw your post. Glad to hear it's still around.

                                                                                                      1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                        dkennedy, how is this served? I'm confused about tapas anyway, I read that anything = tapas. And then that tapas must be finger food (these lentils are not?). And then that if you just cut up a main dish into small pieces you don't have tapas.
                                                                                                        Is this a dip, or served with a fork/spoon? Either way it sounds good.

                                                                                                        1. re: blue room

                                                                                                          Tapas are anything served in small portions, typically at a wine/sherry bar. While finger food, including items on skewers are common, items like this that would be eaten with a fork are fine.

                                                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                                                            Blue room,

                                                                                                            This lentil dish is a "small plate" item. That is the way it is served at the restaurant, but at home I usually serve it as a first course or as a side dish. It is to be eaten with a fork.

                                                                                                          2. re: blue room

                                                                                                            If I recall correctly, tapa means "to top or cover" and when first introduced, used to cover a glass of sherry/wine and then eaten. So, in my book, anything that can be put on top of a glass and eaten without a utensil is a topper (tapa):)

                                                                                                      2. FYI, nominations for the June cookbook are now open here:

                                                                                                        1. Mojo verde (Canary Island green pepper sauce)- Made in Spain by Jose Andres p. 244

                                                                                                          We made this sauce (in addition to the one by Roden) to eat with patatas arrugadas (wrinkled potatoes). Although both sauces were delicious, I preferred Jose's version which is made with garlic, cumin seeds, cilantro, olive oil and a splash of sherry vinegar. This is a thicker sauce with a stronger taste of cumin. Fresh and simple way to dress up potatoes.

                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                            Mutumma (Lamb Stew with White Beans and Coriander) p. 221 Casa Moro

                                                                                                            You might recall that during March's nomination thread I mentioned taking Casa Moro on loan from my local library. I instantly became smitten. I think that is how the discussion about the various Moro cookbooks was spawned. Much to my surprise, Moro ultimately won this month and I couldn't be happier - or more motivated to cook! I have already surpassed my usual participation and it is only the 11th. Yesterday another copy of Casa Moro became available and my local library so I decided to check it back out.

                                                                                                            I paged through it last night while enjoying an episode of The Big Bang Theory. This dish sounded too good to pass by.

                                                                                                            It's on the stovetop right now and my house smells divine. It was super easy to prepare so if it is 1/2 as delicious as it smells it will become a regular around here. The recipe calls for dumping the following into a large pot: 1 kg. boneless lamb shank (or shoulder), stalks of 2 bunches coriander, 1/2 onion, 2 cloves garlic, 3 T. olive oil, 2 t. sweet paprika and 1 t. hot paprika, 3/4 lbs. chard, s and p. Cover and cook this over low heat for 2 1/2 hours. That is the point I am at right now. After 2 1/2 hours add cannellini beans, the tops of the coriander bunches, and another 3/4 lbs. chard. Cook for 20 more minutes.

                                                                                                            For mine 1 used lamb shank (boneless), 1 t. smoked paprika, 1 t. bittersweet paprika, and 1 t. sweet paprika. I also used 1 can precooked cannellini beans. Can't wait to try it!

                                                                                                            1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                              Mutumma (Lamb Stew with White Beans and Coriander) p. 221 Casa Moro

                                                                                                              Reporting back about how the stew came out: I really liked this dish. Wanted to love it, but something was missing. The paprika was wonderful. Next time I will start with an anchovy (in place of some of the salt). I learned this trick from a Jaime Oliver recipe and I really have seen it make a difference in my lamb dishes. Don't know why I didn't think of doing it here. The cooking time was perfect, the meat became fall apart tender. Maybe soothing acidic added near the end to cut the fatty richness of the lamb. A splash of sherry vinegar? A squirt of lemon?

                                                                                                          2. Grilled Chicken with Honey and Cumin – Tapas Sensational Small Plates form Spain by Joyce Goldstein – p. 146

                                                                                                            What a find! Quite simply some of the best grilled chicken we’ve ever had. Goldstein notes that this sweet & sour recipe is similar to many early Roman dishes and perhaps that’s why it held such appeal for us. She goes on to note that what makes this Spanish is the use of cumin. I must confess that we weren’t very “Spanish” with our preparation as I adapted the recipe by using fennel seeds vs the cumin to tie the flavours in to the other items on our menu.

                                                                                                            Prep is simple. Honey, olive oil (I used ¼ cup vs ¾ cup), sherry vinegar, toasted cumin (fennel) seeds, minced garlic, salt and pepper are mixed together in a small pan and heat then cool down before removing ¼ cup to use later as a basting sauce. The remainder is poured over chicken (boneless, skinless thighs in our case however JG also suggests drumsticks or even quail can be used). Meat is left to marinate overnight then brought to room temp prior to grilling. The honey caramelizes as the chicken cooks and makes for an outstanding sweet, sour, salty, smoky flavoured crust. This really was exceptional. This recipe will serve us well through the summer, so glad to have found it!

                                                                                                            9 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                              Ooh, I want to do this. I get grumbling if I use fennel ("licorice" to Mr. blue room), so I'll be happy to try the cumin.

                                                                                                              1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                Thanks blue room, let me know if you want the quantities for the sauce if you don't have the book. Sorry to hear of mr br's aversion to fennel but the cumin will be lovely too and I can't wait to try it as well.

                                                                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                  Yes, the proportions please. Thank you, Breadcrumbs.

                                                                                                                  1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                    Here you go br:

                                                                                                                    1/2 cup honey
                                                                                                                    3/4 cup olive oil (though I found 1/4 c t/b plenty)
                                                                                                                    3 tbsp sherry vinegar
                                                                                                                    2 tbsp cumin seeds - toasted in dry pan and finely ground (I didn't grind)
                                                                                                                    1 tbsp chopped garlic
                                                                                                                    1 tsp ground black pepper

                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                        Thanks, BC! I am going to make it soon and it just might become a favourite for the summer grilling:)

                                                                                                                2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                  This reminds me a lot of a similar (non-grilled) recipe from epicurious that I like a lot. It is for cornish game hens, but when I do it I just use thighs and roast: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                                                                                  1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                    Mmmm, very similar flavour profiles LM...and interesting combination of the anise and the cumin! I've bookmarked that one and love the idea of the cornish hens. Thanks!

                                                                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                      Hope you like it - so simple, but really interesting.

                                                                                                                3. Baked Brown Trout with Bacon and Herb Salad – Seasonal Spanish Food by Jose Pizarro – p. 84

                                                                                                                  I picked up some lovely freshly caught Ontario rainbow trout at the market and was keen to find a Spanish preparation to try. EYB yielded this recipe along w another from Culinaria Spain however for the life of me, I wasn’t able to locate the recipe for Trout stuffed with ham (Truchas rellenas de jamon) in Culinaria’s index or by flipping through the book page by page. What I decided to do was adapt the recipe from Seasonal Spanish Food to include some of the ingredients that appealed to me from the Culinaria recipe.

                                                                                                                  Prep for the SSF recipe is straightforward, 2 slices of bacon are placed lengthwise inside the cleaned cavity of each fish. The fish is salted then placed on an oiled pan and baked at 400°F until done. In addition to the strips of bacon (which I’d partially cook ahead next time since the cooking time for the fish doesn’t allow the bacon to crisp), I mixed together some chopped pimento-stuffed green olives, sliced almonds, lemon zest and a little fresh garlic and placed that atop the bacon in the cavity of the fish.

                                                                                                                  This was truly outstanding and although I didn’t eat the limp bacon, it had infused the other ingredients with its smoky flavour. mr bc had no issue w the bacon and gobbled everything right up! I’ll definitely make this again. Quick & delicious.

                                                                                                                  12 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                    Looks amazing :-)
                                                                                                                    I have Culinaria Spain. Mine is a hardback edition and in mine the trout stuffed with ham is on page 430.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                                                      Thanks Blythe, that's good to know. My book (also hardcover) doesn't have any recipes on p. 430, just a feature on Brandy de Jerez. It does make sense that this recipe would be in the Andalusian section so I guess they must have dropped the recipe from my edition or, added it to a later edition. Very odd. Sorry to hear of your injury btw, I hope you heal quickly and are feeling better soon.

                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                        Thanks for the kind thoughts BC, I stupidly dragged a heavy table in my classroom and pulled a tendon in my right shoulder doing it. First time I've ever injured myself like that - and it's amazingly hard just to get dressed and do my hair, let alone cook. But the cortisone shot seems to be working, so cooking activities can resume soon.
                                                                                                                        My edition of Culinaria Spain is pretty enormous for a cookbook (coffee table size) so maybe smaller editions don't have all the recipes.
                                                                                                                        Here are the basics for Truchas Rellenas de Jamon ( in case you still want to try it :-)First you wash and dry 4 trout (no size specified). The insides are rubbed with S and P.You then combine 1 TBSP roughly chopped almonds with equal amounts of green olives and parsley and a finely diced shallot. You then divvy this mixture amongst four slices of thin
                                                                                                                        slices of Serrano ham. Next, roll up the slices of ham and place one in each of the abdominal cavities of the 4 trout. Use toothpicks to close the openings. Place each trout on a piece of aluminum foil that has been oiled with EVOO. Fold the foil to cover the fish.
                                                                                                                        Be sure to press the folds firmly. You then grill in the foil on a rack for ten minutes a side. Before you serve, you allow the steam to escape but serve in the foil.

                                                                                                                        1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                                                          Oh my goodness Blythe, you really did do some damage didn't you? I can only imagine how incapacitating and painful that must be and from what I've experienced w the cortisone shots, there's the additional pain/bruising from the shot that you have to contend w for the early days on top of the injury. You'll have to be very careful because it's almost impossible not to move your shoulder and I'm sure it would be easy to do more damage. I think you need a Sous Chef!!

                                                                                                                          Thanks so much for your thoughtfulness in posting that recipe. It's very similar to how I treated my trout but I didn't use the parsley or shallot so I'll be sure to do that next time as I'm sure they'd be great additions. I sincerely appreciate you posting this, especially since I can't imagine sitting at a pc is too comfortable w your shoulder hurting either. Thanks so much & take care.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                                                            This recipe is in a section titled 'Something substantial with mountain ham', Jamon Serrano of Andalusia.

                                                                                                                            My copy of Culinaria is half the size of 1080. :)

                                                                                                                            1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                              Thanks Paul. My book (the size of a small village!) doesn't even have that section! I've pasted some photos of my book and the table of contents for the section on Andalusia below:

                                                                                                                              1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                The pictures on your 3rd photo are in mine (the whole leg, the slice, the small ones), but rearranged and placed on a separate 'ham' page. The 'meat variations' page has recipes for lamb, duck and oxtail.

                                                                                                                              2. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                There are several books Culinaria Spain

                                                                                                                                In my book the second book listed on the Amazon link, the recipe: "Something Substantial with Mountain Ham" recipes are on p. 430-431 "

                                                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                  Isn't this interesting, so odd that they'd change the format like this paul. Rella, I'm curious, is the trout recipe in your book?

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                    I'm not sure WHICH trout recipe you mean, but here are the trout recipes in my book: 1) with truffles 2) with mushrooms in red Rioja wine 3) stuffed with ham 4) Navarra-style

                                                                                                                                    all of the recipes above have their Spanish names listed after their English names

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                      Thanks Rella. Sorry, when I started this post (up-thread) I mentioned that despite a Trout stuffed with ham (Truchas rellenas de jamon) recipe appearing in the EYB index for this book, I wasn't able to locate it in my copy. paul & Blythe however both have it in their books. Sounds like your book may not have the recipe either. Very odd.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                        For my particular Culinaria Spain that I referenced above, EYB also shows that 'Truchas rellenas de jamon' IS in my book. However, it is NOT. Not that I can see, I took a few minutes and looked further.

                                                                                                                                        I'm thinking there are just too many "Culinaria Spain" books to get it right.

                                                                                                                      2. Patatas Bravas!

                                                                                                                        We made several renditions of this dish and served them with oven roasted potatoes (instead of fried) and a side of alioli. A previous favorite from Penelope Casas from The Food and Wines of Spain did not stack up. Mendel’s version from Tapas tasted too much of vinegar and the addition of cumin missed the mark for me. In third place, was the Moro’s version which was good, but we preferred the versions from Jose Andres and Teresa Barrenechea.

                                                                                                                        Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America by Jose Andres p. 51


                                                                                                                        Tomatoes (I used canned), sugar (use less if your tomatoes are sweet), bay leaf, pimentón dulce and cayenne are cooked in olive until reduced by a fourth. Off the heat, add sherry vinegar and salt. A nice tomatoey flavor. The vinegar addds a nice touch too. I’d add a bit more heat next time. This was easy to make and not too rich.

                                                                                                                        The Cuisines of Spain by Teresa Barrenechea p. 64


                                                                                                                        This was our favorite version of patatas bravas, but it does require making a tomato sauce in advance (her tomato sauce on p. 311 is simply olive oil and a lot of it, canned tomatoes, onions, water, salt and sugar simmered for 1.5 hours plus until it becomes a rich, jam-like mixture).

                                                                                                                        To make the sauce, olive oil (I added a ½ T of oil from the tomato sauce) is heated on low, then add pimentón dulce, red pepper flakes, Tabasco and sherry vinegar until blended. Process the pimentón mixture with the tomato sauce until blended.

                                                                                                                        What made this sauce was the deep tomato flavor (think tomato jam but not overly sweet) combined with the smoky and spicy elements.

                                                                                                                        If pressed for time, I’d make the Andres version, but if I had the tomato sauce made, I’d make Barrenechea’s version.

                                                                                                                        OT: I typically use Muir Glen canned tomatoes for every day cooking and have some canned tomatoes (purchased from Gustiamo) that I reserve for tomato sauces. Because these sauces relied on tomatoes, I decided to open up a can of each and tried both. What a difference! The Muir Glen tomatoes tasted acidic and did not have the sweet tomato flavor the other version did. No contest. Unfortunately, this could be an expensive revelation.

                                                                                                                        17 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                          Of the Spanish cookbooks that I"ve checked out of the library, Teresa's is the one the impressed me the most.

                                                                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                            I have only tried a couple things so far (ensalada mixta- not much of a recipe but good, patatas bravas, salsa de tomate-excellent but I'd use less oil next time and alioli-more liquid version than Roden's), but everything has been very good. I'm excited to try more things from this book.

                                                                                                                          2. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                            "Several renditions" -- all in one day? Serious comparison cooking. You made 2 batches of the Barrenechea recipe -- one with Muir Glen and one with Gustiamo? I tried Muir Glen once, not impressed, I would even say I disliked them. (I looked up Gustiamo -- yes, expensive vegetables!)
                                                                                                                            By the way, do you choose a certain kind of potato?

                                                                                                                            1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                              Ha! No, I made several different bravas recipe. I ended up making one with Muir Glen and decided I should try my other tomatoes. I happed to take a bite of a Muir Glen and one from Gustiamo (strange that I have never tried a taste of either before). What tomatoes do you use?

                                                                                                                              We used Yukon Gold potatoes (it is what I had).

                                                                                                                              1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                I use... hmmm canned tomatoes... Whole Foods "365" house brand probably the most. And unless I'm baking big ol' russets, I like round red potatoes very much. Not sure I've ever had Yukon Gold.

                                                                                                                              2. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                That's funny about Muir Glen. For dishes that I can use canned tomatoes, MG fire roasted are the only ones I will use. Side by side with others, I think they can't be beat. Of course that is comparing them to other types of supermarket canned tomatoes, not the fancy imported stuff!

                                                                                                                              3. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                Among the recipes we tried while exploring a library copy of Jose Andres Made in Spain, was the patatas brava. Our first time making any patatas brava, so no comparisons to offer, but with Big Sal's wonderful write up to go by, and being under some time pressure that evening, it sounded like just the right one for us, and indeed we both loved it. Thanks for pointing it out Big Sal.

                                                                                                                                1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                  Big Sal--What proportions do you use when making alioli? I've made three attempts so far, and all have broken.

                                                                                                                                  My latest try (based on the recipe in J. Passmore's The Complete Spanish Cookbook) was doing great until the very end, less than a TBS of oil left to incorporate, when it broke. It seems like knowing when to stop is the trick....one I definitely have not mastered.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                    Did you see the Melissa Clark article in the NYTimes about making mayonnaise? I know someone posted a reference to it somewhere. She says the trick to holding the emulsion is to add a teaspoon of water to the egg yolks before beginning to drizzle in the oil. It’s been working like a charm for me.


                                                                                                                                    1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                      I didn't see that Joan, but I will check it out. I can see how it would work in mayonnaise. Lazy me I haven't made an egg based mayo in anything other than a MFP in years, and somehow I have the knack for that.

                                                                                                                                      But the traditional Catalan alioli doesn't have any egg--just garlic, salt and oil, and it doesn't work at all in an MFP, it is all done in a mortar and pestle.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                        Oh, sorry. I didn't know that. I wasn't making a distinction between "alioli" and "aioli" and was thinking it was just mayo with garlic.

                                                                                                                                    2. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                      Hey qianning I just saw this. I'm still very hit and miss with alioli. It seems to depend on the day (and how patient I am), but the last successful run I had was with Jose Andres's recipe.

                                                                                                                                      I've had the same experience with the alioli breaking just as you are about to finish. It's heartbreaking when you think you are about to finish, your arm is burning with pain and then it breaks.

                                                                                                                                      What do you think of Passmore's book? I have it, but haven't tried anything from it yet. Also, did you see the Penelope Casas has a new cookbook coming out this fall (1,000 Spanish Recipes)?

                                                                                                                                      1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                        No! No! (re new Casas). Averting eyes.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                          Oh, I like the Passmore book. I'm always surprised when I find someone else has it, it's not that common. I've done a few things from it (which things, I'm unable to tell you) with great success. Plus our supper club had a Spanish dinner and one of our members made something spectacular from it. Maybe braised duck with figs? Is that in the book?

                                                                                                                                          1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                                                                                            I'll have to take another look at the Passmore book and see if it has the duck and figs recipe. I didn't realize she had written so many cookbooks. I'm suspect I acquired this one in an effort to "complete" my Spanish cookbook collection. It requires quite a bit of restraint for me not to purchase anything new (or new to me) on the subject.

                                                                                                                                          2. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                            Re-- Big Sal "Heart-breaking" summarizes it. My first attempt at alioli was with Andres recipe, but I was a novice in a hurry, not the right approach at all. Passmore's recipe got me farther, and when it did break she has a workable solution to fix it (ad an egg & whizz), so at least it wasn't a total loss.

                                                                                                                                            I'm liking the looks of Passmore's book a lot, but haven't cooked from it much yet.

                                                                                                                                            Another Casas book? Oh dear, and I've hardly had a chance to explore the copy of Delicioso! that I got over a year ago....

                                                                                                                                            Re: LN, yes the fig and duck recipe is in Passmore. I was just looking at it today. Glad to hear it is fabulous. Now I just need to find the duck legs....

                                                                                                                                      2. Pinxto Gilda (Basque tapa of olive, anchovy, anf guindilla pepper) p. 66 from Made in Spain by Jose Andres.

                                                                                                                                        A simple and tasty snack. Skewer a pitted manzanilla olive, anchovy fillet or boquerón, and a guindilla pepper. We made some with anchovies and some with boquerones. A salty and spicy bite.

                                                                                                                                        Aceitunas verdes rellenas de pimiento y anchoa ( Green olives filled with piquillo peppers and anchovy) p. 27 from Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America by Jose Andres.

                                                                                                                                        Place an anchovy and piquillo pepper strip inside a pitted green olive. Marinate in a dressing (garlic, olive oil, sherry vinegar and orange zest) for half an hour.

                                                                                                                                        Another tasty bite.

                                                                                                                                        1. I'm lucky enough to have acquired the Ortegas' 1080 recipes through marriage. http://www.amazon.ca/1080-Recipes-Sim...

                                                                                                                                          I had been wondering what to cook this week and now am inspired to pull it down and start in on my grocery list fresh.

                                                                                                                                          1. Gypsy's Arm (Brazo de Gitano)
                                                                                                                                            from "The Cooking of Spain and Portugal" (Time-Life Books, Foods of the World series)

                                                                                                                                            This is a spongecake roll with pastry cream. The cake is eggy and tender, pretty standard, but the filling I especially like. Hot milk is infused with a vanilla bean and stick cinnamon, thickened, sweetened, and flavored with dark rum. I'm not sure what aspect of this dessert makes it Spanish--?
                                                                                                                                            The cookbook is 40 years old, I suppose it just happens to be a traditional cake there.

                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                              I remember once in Budapest being completely baffled by the English description of something as "flecken of gypsy heart." I wonder if it was a bad translation of this dish??

                                                                                                                                              1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                Ooh, strange -- I see "flecken" translated online as "stain", or "small town". Beats me.

                                                                                                                                            2. Noodles with White Beans, Chorizo and Clams – The New Spanish Table – p. 353

                                                                                                                                              If you like these ingredients, you’ll LOVE this dish. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get clams at my market but the author suggests mussels as an alternative so that’s the route I went. Despite having a fairly long list of ingredients, prep for this dish was surprisingly quick and, the dish cooks very quickly as well so it held additional appeal for that reason. Though I recently purchased a cazuela, I was a bit nervous about putting it in a 425°F oven to finish this dish so I opted to prepare in a pan instead. I’d love to hear from seasoned cazuela users…mine came w a sticker saying to avoid high heat but I’m wondering if that just meant for stove-top cooking? Any thoughts would be appreciated.
                                                                                                                                              This recipe calls for diced chorizo and while I was delighted to find amazing chorizo imported from Spain, I did find it very difficult to dice given its somewhat soft texture. Next time I’d partially freeze to make life easier. This was such a flavourful dish with lots of interesting, contrasting textures that further enhanced its appeal. I can imagine how impressive it would look if prepared and served in the cazuela and look forward to making this again for company. If you have this book, this one’s a winner!

                                                                                                                                              1. Tiny Spiced Meatballs with Tomatoes (Albondigas)
                                                                                                                                                "From Tapas to Meze", p 26

                                                                                                                                                These are very well-seasoned little meatballs (pork and beef, breadcrumbs). No paprika! But garlic, cumin, nutmeg, coriander, cayenne, S&P all contributed to the flavor. Simmered (after baking) in white wine, tomatoes, and onion, they should be just 1" around--my hurrying increased their girth.

                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                                  Those look lovely br. I'm making a meatball dish from Joyce Goldstein's Tapas book tomorrow and like you, I was surprised that there was no paprika in the ingredient list.

                                                                                                                                                2. Salmon with Orange Vinaigrette – 1080 Recipes by Simone & Ines Ortega – p. 522

                                                                                                                                                  This is the first recipe I’ve prepared from this book and I’m glad the COTM/Spanish month gave me the opportunity to pull the book off my shelf and get to know it better. I haven’t really looked through it since I first brought it home and had forgotten how charming it was inside with its whimsical illustrations. I’d also forgotten how many photos there were (something I always appreciate) and the excellent variety of recipes the book contains. I’m confident this book will get more use now I’ve re-acquainted myself w it.

                                                                                                                                                  I chose this recipe for its simplicity and because I try to incorporate salmon into our menu at least once, if not twice a week. The book calls for you to marinade the salmon in olive oil (1 cup) for 20 mins then to discard the marinade (olive oil)…well, that just wasn’t going to happen as I felt this was unnecessary waste. Instead I simply rubbed the salmon w a generous pour of EVOO and called it a day. A vinaigrette is prepared by combining shallot, orange juice and zest, balsamic vinegar, olive oil and salt. I think some of the info was lost in the translation of this book because the ingredients list – 10 strips of shallot. I suspect it meant to list a shallot and strips of orange zest. Not sure where the 10 came into things as the directions use 3 strips of orange zest and surely we wouldn’t be using 10 shallots! Nonetheless I carried on and I must admit the dressing was very tasty. I used some of it to soak some dried cranberries and tossed them, along w the dressing, with some baby spinach to serve alongside the salmon. The recipe suggests that you broil the salmon but instead, I opted to grill it. While the book suggests that the vinaigrette be served alongside, I used some to dress our salad and drizzled the remainder atop the plated salmon. This was a quick and delicious weeknight dinner. The flavours in the dressing were mild and next time I’d likely up the zest to boost the orange flavour. Very nice and worth repeating.

                                                                                                                                                  8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                    Nice write-up, Breadcrumbs; I enjoyed it.

                                                                                                                                                    Question: When you say the recipe suggests broiling, but you opted to grill it:

                                                                                                                                                    When I think of 'grilling' it; it comes to mind:

                                                                                                                                                    1) putting the fish on a solid one-piece heavy grill that sits on top of a 'bridged' burner on a glass top stove.

                                                                                                                                                    2) putting the fish on a two-piece grill, the top being a grate that one lays the fish onto.

                                                                                                                                                    3) putting the fish on a grated open bottom (no bottom to the grill) grill built into one's


                                                                                                                                                    4) an electric grill pan (this is ole time equipment, I guess) completely separate from a range.

                                                                                                                                                    5) outside grilling

                                                                                                                                                    Which did you use? Which is easier for you to use, - as well as clean up.

                                                                                                                                                    Many thanks!

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                      Rella thanks so much and I should have been more clear. We grilled over charcoal however any of the methods you suggest would have worked. For weeknight dinners I tend to opt for a method that minimizes clean up. If mr bc didn't have the charcoal grill already set up, my next choice would have been using the gas grill. After that, I would have roasted the salmon on a parchment lined baking sheet.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                        Your pictures inspired me re this recipe as well as the write-up.

                                                                                                                                                        DH bought a tiny outdoor grill recently which he has used once for a steak. I think I'll try the little grill for the next salmon fillet, as we always eat 'just' two pieces.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                          I end up doing a lot of oven-roasting/baking of fish because it is quick and easy. I've never used a parchment lined baking sheet though. Does this help you get a crispier crust on the fish? I am intrigued because I usually use a glass pyrex and sometimes the results are too moist for me.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Westminstress

                                                                                                                                                            Sorry I missed your post here Westminstress. I don't know that the parchment makes the salmon any more crispy than if I were to simply use the pan itself but I wonder if you may want to switch over to using a baking sheet vs a pyrex dish. In my experience anything with a higher wall tends to retain moisture and adds steam to the dish. Depending on what I'm cooking, I sometimes place a rack on the baking sheet so the food sits flush w the top of the pan and is fully exposed to the heat of the oven.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                              I get the best crust on a salmon steak by frying in a nonstick skillet with some oil over fairly high heat. It left uncovered I get quite a bit of spatter. Covering is ok, especially with a thick steak. Thinner pieces might cook through before a crust develops.

                                                                                                                                                              Dusting with flour, especially Wondra, is supposed to promote a good crust, but I have don't have much experience with that.

                                                                                                                                                              But keeping with the Spanish theme, I'm happiest with marmitako, a simple stew of tuna, potato, onion, pepper, and tomato. Salmon also works well. The fish is cooked in bite size pieces.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Westminstress

                                                                                                                                                                For a crispy skin or crust on fish that's cooked indoors, it's hard to beat the broiling technique in Rick Moonen's Fish Without a Doubt. He preheats a cast iron griddle or skillet under the broiler for 15 minutes, dredges the fish in butter or oil, seasons it, and puts it on the killer hot cast iron to broil for just a few minutes. Best fish skin I've ever had; much more reliably crispy than sautéing. And even with skinless fillets, the bottom caramelizes better and more quickly than with either stove-top or oven methods.

                                                                                                                                                        2. Pollo a la Sidra (Chicken and Apples Braised in Hard Cider)
                                                                                                                                                          from "The New Spanish Table", p.292

                                                                                                                                                          The book cautions against sweet apple cider in this dish -- I used a tart brand named "Woodchuck" from Vermont, northeast USA. First the (salted and peppered) chicken thighs are browned in olive oil, then pancetta and onion are softened/cooked in same oil. Cider is introduced, reduced, and finally all bakes for about 40 minutes in a casserole. Meanwhile you soften/cook a peeled & sliced apple in butter, add this and a little cider vinegar to the casserole liquid, turn up the heat, bake another 15 minutes or so until the chicken is browned and tender. I used skinless thighs so I went easy on the browning. Yes, it's good! The book says it comes from Asturias ("...Spain's answer to the Scottish Highlands..." -- intriguing, no?) where hard apple cider is drunk -- and liked a lot!
                                                                                                                                                          The recipe says the pancetta or bacon is optional, but I wouldn't leave it out now that I've tasted it.

                                                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                          1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                                            Newtons Folly Granny Smith Draft Cider from Trader Joes is my choice for a dish like this.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                              Newton's Folly -- picturesque name --
                                                                                                                                                              I'm a bit limited (Utah State Liquor store) but the Woodchuck brand does use Granny Smiths. Who knows how it compares to hard cider produced in northern Spain!

                                                                                                                                                            2. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                                              I've been to the northwest corner of Spain, and it truly is like the Scottish highlands. Mountainous, damp and gray, and people playing bagpipes on corners of the bigger cities/towns.

                                                                                                                                                            3. Pollo al Ajillo (from The New Spanish Table, page 285)

                                                                                                                                                              I read your Moro and Food of Spain reviews of this dish and this preparation differs somewhat. The chicken pieces are salted and set aside for half an hour before being lightly floured and browned in olive oil along with a dozen slightly smashed, unpeeled cloves of garlic. The chicken is removed to a cazuela (I used a sauteuse), the original pan is wiped clean, and then 10 sliced garlic cloves are lightly sautéed in new oil, a crumbled arbol chile is stirred in, as is a tablespoon of flour, before adding chicken broth and white wine. The chicken is put in the oven to finish cooking for about 15 minutes before being finished with a sprinkling of vinegar and parsley.

                                                                                                                                                              The sauce was awfully good, but this recipe didn’t make as much of it as the others seemed to and I would have like more. I loved the addition of the vinegar; I used a very good Moscatel vinegar and thought it a delightful touch. I may have oversalted the chicken at the beginning, but I’m sensitive to salt anyway and find many dishes too salty for my taste. My grandson liked this dish a great deal (but then, I have him brainwashed; I have him believing that if I cooked it, it HAS to be good). I thought that all in all it was just okay, certainly not something I’d be in a hurry to make again.

                                                                                                                                                              1. Souflé de verduras (Vegetable soufflé) from "Cocina Monocal", p.94
                                                                                                                                                                Working from a book in a language I don't speak or read, with the help of Google Translate, I managed to put together a tender savory dish which haha *isn't* as good as Stouffer's Spinach Souffle.
                                                                                                                                                                It's pureed spinach, brussel sprouts, cauliflower. Combine that with mashed potato, milk, butter, egg yolk, chopped ham. Then fold in stiffly whipped egg white, bake (in bain-Marie) until set. As you can see, it becomes a moist semi-solid and very green vegetable side.
                                                                                                                                                                This was disappointing and bland, I'd rather have colcannon.
                                                                                                                                                                The book is so intriguing, with cool cool pictures of old convent interiors, and quite a few food pictures too. I'll try something else from this book later in the week.

                                                                                                                                                                9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                                                  Did you know that the Basques have a version of colcannon, Trinxat? Recipes vary some, but most fry the potatoes and cabbage (or kale) in a cake, and serve it with a generous helping of bacon (or the likes)

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                    Wow, that looks wonderful. I like colcannon a lot, but this has got an appealing extra oomph!

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                      Thank you, paulj -- how is it that you know Trinxat?

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                                                        I think I first saw the recipe in a used book, Tastes of the Pyrenees (Mariana Chang)

                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                        paulj, I think Trinxat is Catalan, not Basque. Fried potatoes and cabbage, with salt pork or lard. Somewhat like colcannon, or, bubble and squeak? but with garlic.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: spainkitchen

                                                                                                                                                                          I don't know the exact distribution of this dish. The name, apparently, is Catalan. It is regarded as a nation dish of Andorra. And the descriptions focus on a couple of Catalan mountain communities. I still think I've seen descriptions from the Basque part of these mountains, but I probably should have used Andorra or Catalan.

                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                                                        So sorry it was a disappointing dish br, especially after your investment of time & effort. I really enjoyed reading your post and you're certainly an inspiration! I agree with LN, your dish does look lovely. LOL that it "isn't as good as Souffer's". I've never had spinach souffle before but I sure do want to try it now.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                          Breadcrumbs, you're too sweet, (Cookiecrumbs?) I think L.Nightshade was referring to the Basque dish that paulj linked to, not my sad green accumulation, but thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                          A recipe I made (banana/pineapple dessert) from "The New Spanish Table" mentioned the "Poor Clare" nuns, specifically a pastry book. This recipe is from another of their books.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                                                            I was responding to paulj, but I actually thought your dish looked pretty darn good. I love the idea of vegetables in a fluffy comfort food. I would have tried to duplicate it if it weren't for your disappointing conclusion!

                                                                                                                                                                      4. Pan con Tomate y Jamón Serrano (Tomato Toast with Spanish Ham) p. 36 Tapas by Jose Andres

                                                                                                                                                                        Queso Manchego con Pan con Tomate (Manchego Cheese with Catalan Tomato Bread) p. 168 Tapas by Jose Andres

                                                                                                                                                                        Tostada de Garrotxa (Tomato Toast with Garrotxa cheese) p. 62 Made in Spain by Jose Andres

                                                                                                                                                                        Simple ways to enjoy some Spanish ingredients. Since we were going out for dinner tonight, we decided to snack our way through lunch. Toast rustic bread and rub a cut tomato into the bread until the flesh is grated and only the skin is left. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and add topping (manchego, garrotxa or jamón) and finish with another drizzle of olive oil.

                                                                                                                                                                        Simple and satisfying way to enjoy jamón or cheese. Garrotxa was a Spanish cheese that was new to us. It is a goat cheese that is milky white, delicate and slightly nutty. Very good.

                                                                                                                                                                        A side note for those that enjoy Spanish cheeses (Manchego, Zamorano, Campo de Montalban, Roncal, Murcia al Vino, etc.). Pairing them with membrillo (quince paste) is a delicious combination of sweet and savory. It makes a great dessert or snack.

                                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                                                          As part of tapas selection at a cook out pre-paella we had Tomato Toast with Serrano Ham, and Tomato Toast with Caprino (couldn't find the Garrotxa, and am not overly fond of Manchego, so subbed in the Caprino)--love these and so did the guests.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jpr54_1

                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks. I've been looking forever for a good sherry vinegar. Are there any here that anyone has tried or would definitely recommend?

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                              Going a little off course again tonight. Dinner is being pulled from the pages of Cod and Country. While I'm not cooking out of a Spanish cookbook, the recipes could be interpreted as Spanish inspired, at least that is what I'm telling myself. As my trip grows closer (we are leaving on Friday), it is becoming clearer and clearer I will not be able to make my way through any more Moro recipes. At least, not until I get back! Tonight I'll be serving salmon poached in red wine sauce, accompanied by roasted pears and a warm, lentil dish which calls for smoked paprika.

                                                                                                                                                                              Though I won't be cooking again until mid-June, I'll be reading everyones' posts, provided I get internet access where I am staying in France. Au Revoir.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                Have a fabulous time! I'll be looking for reports on the France board.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                  Bon voyage! Whereabouts are you going?

                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                  I'm wondering if anyone uses Citterio Serrano Jamon (from Spain) in slices in an 8 oz. package.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Also if anyone has a brand of sherry vinegar they recommend.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks so much.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                    I have no idea if it's available in the States, but I use a brand called Valdespino, which is excellent.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                                                                                                                      Interesting comment in this article:
                                                                                                                                                                                      "I have some rare bottles of Valdespino sherry vinegar, from the family’s own barrel, which was entered in the World’s Fair of 1904 as an old vinegar. The acidity is in the region of 17 degrees, compared to the more usual six degrees, so it, too, is used sparingly, a drop in a classic gazpacho, for example."


                                                                                                                                                                                      Reminds one of balsamic... Thanks - I'll keep an eye open.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. Magdalenas ... "Cocina Monacal", p. 159
                                                                                                                                                                                (Another experiment from my Spanish language cookbook, Hermanas Clarisas convent recipes, translation by Google...)
                                                                                                                                                                                These are very well known in Spain, if what I read around the 'net is correct
                                                                                                                                                                                Very simple, just eggs milk flour sugar -- and *yeast* ?? In a little teacake ? Nowhere in the "elaboracion" (method) does it call for the batter to rise, the yeast isn't explained. So I used baking powder instead, it just made more sense. They bake until golden--no temp or time provided, I had to guess that too!
                                                                                                                                                                                I would love to know how the cakes in the book (picture with spoon) got so pointed! Mine much less so... yeast couldn't have done that, I'm pretty sure.

                                                                                                                                                                                Flavored with zest of lemon, they have a nice springy texture, slightly chewy exterior. Not something I'd make again, but I was curious about this traditional treat.

                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                                                                  One Spanish recipe calls for:
                                                                                                                                                                                  levadura royal

                                                                                                                                                                                  levadura is normally yeast, but 'royal' is the nearly generic name for baking powder, from the most common brand.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Another calls for 'Levadura en polvo' - polvo = powder

                                                                                                                                                                                  pre baking powder cakes like this depended on eggs for leavening (genoise, sponge cake). I wouldn't be surprised if these Spanish cakes have same roots as the French Madeleines, which are genoise baked in shell molds.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                    In my experience, in Spanish recipes, it always specifies what type of levadura/gasificante you need to use:

                                                                                                                                                                                    levadura de panadero/seca: dry yeast

                                                                                                                                                                                    levadura fresca: fresh yeast that you can buy here in little cubes in the refrigerated section of the supermarket

                                                                                                                                                                                    levadura química/Levadura Royal: Baking powder. Sometimes it comes in two separate packets that you mix together.

                                                                                                                                                                                    gasicifantes, bicarbonato sódico: Straight up baking soda isn't used much here in baking, but it's readily available in pharmacies. You add the acid to activate it.

                                                                                                                                                                                2. Lentils and Mushrooms From Aragon – Tapas by Joyce Goldstein – p. 95

                                                                                                                                                                                  I was looking for a dish to accompany some grilled lamb this evening and though I had potatoes in mind, I quickly shifted gears on discovering this recipe. I love lamb and lentils paired together and could imagine how wonderful this fennel-infused version would be with my lamb and orange-pepper marmalade.

                                                                                                                                                                                  For the vegetarians in the crowd I should mention that this dish would make for an absolutely delicious and satisfying meal unto itself with the sautéed mushrooms and tomato-onion-fennel mixture producing a hearty, stew-like meal.
                                                                                                                                                                                  I also think that it would be delicious as a main dish with a little (crispy) Serrano ham sprinkled atop as Ms Goldstein suggests as an alternate preparation.

                                                                                                                                                                                  I used Umbrian green lentils as we enjoy their toothsome textures. Ms JG also mentions that Spanish pardina lentils would be good as would green lentils from France. Prep is a little fussy in that you have 3 pans on the go however, no step is complicated or especially time consuming, especially if you use the food processor to dice your veggies as I did. While your lentils simmer, a mixture of fennel, carrot and onion is sautéed prior to adding some chopped tomatoes and garlic. Once the tomatoes have released their juices, this mixture is added to the cooked lentils. Mushrooms are also sautéed in EVOO then doused w a little sherry prior to tossing them into the lentil mixture. Seasoning is adjusted as necessary and I drizzled w a little EVOO to add a fruity note and to further tie this dish together w my lamb/marmalade.

                                                                                                                                                                                  I would have been quite happy to make a meal out of this dish alone. The mushrooms added a nice textural element and the other vegetables had simmered together to produce a rich and exceptionally flavourful broth. Truly scrumptious, and I imagine this would be great at room temperature as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks for the vegetarian tip (I'm not totally one, but I find that I want to eat less and less animal protein lately). This sounds incredible. Can you give a basic idea of the amounts?

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                      No problem at all LLM, here you go:

                                                                                                                                                                                      2 c. small green or brown lentils (see my post for more info)
                                                                                                                                                                                      approx 1/2 c olive oil (I used about 1/4c in total)
                                                                                                                                                                                      1 1/2 c diced onion
                                                                                                                                                                                      1 1/2 c diced carrot
                                                                                                                                                                                      1/2 cup diced fennel or celery
                                                                                                                                                                                      2 lg. tomatoes peeled, seeded and chopped
                                                                                                                                                                                      1 tbsp minced garlic
                                                                                                                                                                                      6-8 oz. cultivted white or cremini mushrooms, stem ends trimmed and sliced 1/4" thick
                                                                                                                                                                                      1/3 c medium dry sherry
                                                                                                                                                                                      fresh ground pepper
                                                                                                                                                                                      finely shredded mint (I just dusted w fennel pollen) to garnish

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Lamb Chops with Piquillo Pepper Marmalade – The New Spanish Table – p. 246

                                                                                                                                                                                      Grilled lamb is one of those dishes that makes me salivate by merely thinking about it. When I read through this recipe I just knew we’d love the dish and indeed this was a winner.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Prep is fairly straightforward and I simplified the process by placing the lamb along with all the marinating ingredients (garlic, evoo, rosemary, S&P) in a ziplock bag overnight so I just had to prepare the marmalade the following day.

                                                                                                                                                                                      The marmalade is made by sautéing sliced onion in evoo over med-low heat until soft then adding sliced garlic and cooking a little longer before stirring in sliced piquillo peppers, piquillo pepper oil, orange zest & juice, rosemary, a bay leaf and a little water. The heat is reduced to low, the pan is covered and the mixture is allowed to simmer until all ingredients are sufficiently softened. Though AvB suggests you may wish to add water if the mixture is too dry, this wasn’t at all necessary in my case and as you’ll see from my photos, the marmelade definitely did have a syrupy sauce which I opted to retain vs further reduce as it tasted delicious with the sweetness of the peppers working beautifully with the slight tang of the orange and, the sherry vinegar that you stir in prior to serving.

                                                                                                                                                                                      This mixture is served alongside or atop the grilled chops. I opted to pass the bowl of marmalade and allow diners to use as much or as little as they wished. Unfortunately they wished for all the marmalade and there weren’t any leftovers!! mr bc grilled the chops to medium-rare perfection over charcoal.

                                                                                                                                                                                      I'd highly recommend this one. The marmalade take the dish from good to great.

                                                                                                                                                                                      25 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                        I would have overlooked this recipe if you didn't discover it for us. It sounds great! Mouth-watering pictres as usual. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                                                                          I respond the same way to the thought of grilled lamb. Adding this to my list immediately!

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                          That sounds darn good, BC. I'm in on this one too...

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                            Question Breadcrumbs: I don't have this book but I'd like to try a version of this. Do you use pequillo peppers from a jar, and then use the oil from the jar? Or are they dried peppers and you made the oil?
                                                                                                                                                                                            Your chops look delicious!

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                                                                                                                                              Thanks all! LN, sorry I'm late here to answer your question. Yes, the recipe calls for 8 large jarred pequillo peppers and 1 tbsp oil from the jar and that's what I used.


                                                                                                                                                                                              Piquillo Pepper Marmalade

                                                                                                                                                                                              2 tbsp evoo
                                                                                                                                                                                              1/2 med. size onion cut in 1/2 & thinly sliced
                                                                                                                                                                                              3 med. garlic cloves thinly sliced
                                                                                                                                                                                              8 lg piquillo peppers cut into strips plus 1 tbsp of their oil
                                                                                                                                                                                              2 tsp grated orange zest
                                                                                                                                                                                              2 tbsp fresh orange juice
                                                                                                                                                                                              1 fresh rosemary sprig
                                                                                                                                                                                              1 sm. bay leaf
                                                                                                                                                                                              1 tsp sherry vinegar (for finishing)

                                                                                                                                                                                              instructions per my post above.

                                                                                                                                                                                              ETA: I should mention that the following night I served this marmalade with some grilled salmon that I'd coated w a quick rub I threw together (smoked sweet paprika, chopped garlic, orange zest, salt, aleppo pepper and cumin) It was lovely w the salmon as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh thanks, Breadcrumbs! I appreciate so much that you wrote out all the ingredients. I'm away from home right now, but plan to try this when I get back; it really sounds great.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                              Lamb Chops with Piquillo Pepper Marmalade, The New Spanish Table, page 246.

                                                                                                                                                                                              I finally got around to this recipe, based solely upon Breadcrumbs' great descriptions and ingredient list (I don't have the book). We had a piece left from a leg of lamb, that had been frozen for a while, and that is what I used instead of chops. I marinated it, as described above, in olive oil, garlic, rosemary, salt, and pepper, starting in the morning. Later I made the marmalade, largely as Breadcrumbs describes, but, after taste testing I added more sherry vinegar, so it maybe totalled a full tablespoon. This was lovely! I've got some left over, and I wish I had more. I see lamb sandwiches with piquillo marmalade in my future.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                                                                                                                                                LN, thank-you! Your dish looks exquisite! It made me crave it all over again. Just lovely, glad you enjoyed this.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                Looks so delicious, BC, that I want to make it now!:) Will wait a bit and have to find piquillo peppers somewhere - where did you find yours? I never saw them in a regular grocery store but I wasn't looking either... Marmalade will last in the fridge for a week or so, what do you think? I am thinking that it will be helpful to me if I make the dish in stages.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks so much herby! This is a dish you can definitely make in stages and your marmalade will be fine in the fridge for a week. I froze what was left of mine at that point and it seems to have maintained its textural integrity in the freezer. I always marinate my meat on the weekends then freeze in ziplocks so I can pull out during the week and just pop on the grill or under the broiler when we get home.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I have a gourmet shop that stocks piquillos close to my office but, some of the best I've found have been from HomeSense and Winners - just check the labels and be sure they're from Spain.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I am slightly taken aback by the piquillo oil in the recipe, in that I've only ever bought or seen jarred roasted piquillos in water, never in oil. In fact, I have a jar in my pantry, product of Spain, the ingredients of which are piquillos, water, salt, citric acid. Next time I'm in the neighborhood of the Spanish Table, I should look at their selection; I haven't bothered to in the past because my regular market carries several brands.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I have seen both, but, granted, the water and citric acid is the more common version. Just like regular jarred roasted red peppers, you can buy them in water, oil, or sometimes vinegar.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                                                                                                                                                        In Spain it's the other way around... the canned-in-oil version is more common and generally more highly prized. The jarred variety is often cheaper and not as high quality--I keep them around to use those for soups or sofritos and such. For whatever reason, the US market is a lot more "canned food" averse. Here in Spain, there is no stigma about this, because the canned food is of very high quality and the ingredients methods used deliver a much better product (going back to Roman times when Spain was a huge supplier of preserved tuna and other fish for the mothership). I have to mention Spanish canned artichokes here--especially the little ones that are 16-20 per can--they are excellent.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: butterfly

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Speaking of canned artichokes, I prefer the large crowns over the young ones that are half leaves. If young enough the leaves are ok, but I grew up eating the large fresh ones. The bare heart or crown was the ultimate goal. Unfortunately I haven't seen reasonably priced crowns in the USA in some time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                                            They sell frozen artichoke hearts at TJs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I'm not sure but I'd guess that the ones packed in oil may be intended to be served as tapas, on their own and perhaps the ones in water are used "in" dishes. Though my jar is now long gone, the ones I had in oil had some charred garlic in the jar as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Many thanks for your suggestions, BC! I am in NY right now but will be at home in a couple of weeks and will check Winners and HomeSense - I would've never thought of looking there though often pick some food items at Winners.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yes, do check there herby. I was actually surprised to see how many Spanish ingredients I found there. I also got a great deal on some cazuelas there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                            What are cazueloas, BC? Never heard of... (blushing)

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                              A cazuela (which means "cooking pot" in Spanish) is a clay cooking vessel used throughout Latin America. I'm sure you've seen them in tapas restaurants.


                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                And if I could I would collect them just as some collect cookie jars - so beautiful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Do you think this would work with lamb meat cut and cooked as Kebabs?

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                        qianning I think that would be wonderful. It would definitely work and I'm sure it would be delicious! You might even add some red bell pepper and onion to the skewers to mirror the flavours in the marmalade. Great idea!! I'll have to make a note in my book.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks BC. I'm just putting the party menu together, and would really like to give this a whirl. I'll report back on how it goes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Enjoy qianning! Looking forward to hearing how you enjoy it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Paella de pollo y setas (Chicken and mushroom paella) p. 154 from Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America by José Andrés


                                                                                                                                                                                                      Spanish rice dishes are some of my favorites. The emphasis is on the flavor the rice itself. Early on when making paella and arroces, I would gravitate towards recipes that had a lot of ingredients thinking that adding more would result in better flavor, but now I prefer a few simple ingredients including homemade stock. This is a good example of how a simple dish can have outstanding flavor. I’d forgotten how good this is. It does require making a sofrito (a tomato and onion sauce) in advance. Otherwise, this is a snap to make. The result is an umami-laden rice dish that is earthy, rich and very satisfying.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Small pieces of chicken (we used boneless chicken thighs with skin) are sautéed until browned and then set aside. Next sauté chanterelle mushrooms, then add green beans and garlic and sauté. Return the chicken to the pan and then add diced jamón serrano, white wine, and sofrito. Lastly, add chicken stock, bay leaf, saffron, season with salt and add the rice (we used Bomba).

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. www.gilttaste.com
                                                                                                                                                                                                        has listed products from Spain-
                                                                                                                                                                                                        some food is from Around the World in 80plates

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. Paella: recipe handout from the Spanish Table.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          This is a basic paella recipe - which I got for free when I purchased a small $10 paella pan. Proportions listed are for one person. Prep begins with heating one cup of stock (chix). You then crush five threads of saffron into the stock (or a bit of white wine). The next step: heat a paella pan over medium heat, add 4 Tbs. EVOO and cook one piece of chix until it browns.( I used a thigh). Then add one garlic clove minced along with 1/4 cup chopped onion. When these are translucent, add 1/2 to one Bilbao chorizo and cook till heated thru. Add 1/3 cup Bomba rice (or 1/2 cup if using Valencian). Stir the rice till it it coated with oil. Add 1/2 t pimenton (sweet) and 1/8 cup grated tomato - cut in half, grate, discard skin. Stir while this cooks @ a few minutes. Add saffron flavored wine and hot stock. Bring to a boil while scraping bottom of pan. No need to stir after this point - rice should be level.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Lower heat so water is just 'smiling' - low but adequate simmer. When most of the liquid has been absorbed but is still a bit soupy add 2-4 small clams. When the rice is cooked, add 2 shrimp or prawns - nestle these down into the rice a bit. Then add red piquillo peppers cut into strips, artichoke hearts, green beans or peas. At this point, the liquid will have mostly evaporated and you will hear the sound of the rice sizzling on the bottom of the pan - caramelizing and forming the socarrat. When you start to smell a toasty sweet ( but not burnt) smell - take pan off heat and allow it to rest for 5-10 min. Sprinkle with parsley and serve garnished with lemon wedges.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          I found this to be a great recipe for both the techniques and the proportions. I'm not normally a huge fan of saffron but I found the quantity here to be just enough to create a wonderful nuance without being overpowering and medicinal- tasting - as it can sometimes be. I used jarred piquillo peppers from Spain. After heating them, I think there is not enough flavor difference between them and home roasted red peppers, which I will use next time. The paella was delicious - with the exception of the chorizo - which for my taste, is just too heavy. I'm excited to try more paella recipes now that I've had one technical success.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Paella requires a bit of vigilance and attention as it can quickly burn during the last part of the process - but it is not as intimidating as I thought it would be.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Blythe your paella sounds outstanding! I had hoped to make one last weekend but unfortunately I wasn't able to get clams. Your post is inspiring though...thank-you!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Thanks BC :-)
                                                                                                                                                                                                              For me, it was a good starting place. I'm not sure this recipe will end up as an all time favorite, but I'm glad I finally 'got my feet wet ' !

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                                                                                                                                              There is an absolutely wonderful paella (chicken and seafood, I think) in Fish without a Doubt. I've made it a few times and it never fails me - or the rest of the family. Highly recommend it to any of you who have the book but haven't tried it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I do have that book LLM and I'll most definitely flag this recipe. Thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Oh good. I've never had it not work, and I seem to remember it being fairly simple to put together. Now if only I had room for a paella pan ...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  LLM, I don't yet have that book but it's on my wishlist at Amazon. Now I'll just have to cave in and get it! I really enjoyed watching Moonen on Top Chef Masters - I'm sure there will be other worthwhile recipes in that book as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I absolutely love that book (might be good to keep in mind that I am mostly a pescatarian - but I think it stands up for whoever loves fish). Highly recommend it. And he really was likeable, I thought, On Top Chef Masters.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Blythe, jic you weren't aware, this was a COTM as well. Even though I wasn't around then, I've been adding to those threads when I make something. Here's the link FYI:


                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks BC, I love reading the older threads and didn't realize this was a COTM. Fish cookery is something I've always wanted to be good at - but for some reason, I usually only get fish when eating out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I cook fish often, had quite a few fish cookbooks, and thought I knew just about everything I needed to know about cooking fish. Fish Without a Doubt was still a revelation and is right up there with perhaps my 10 favorite cookbooks of all time. I think I've made at least a third of the recipes in the book so far and I buy it for friends whose homes I visit so I won't have to lug my copy around with me. I promise you, this book will have you saying, "Why order it out when I can cook it better at home?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Joan, I just had a chance to look at a couple of the threads for this book and the recipes sound amazing. Am glad to hear its a good gift, because my best classroom volunteer loves seafood and it sounds like this would be great as an end-of-the-year gift for her.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks for the heads-up on this everyone :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                3. Red Sauce – Tapas Sensational Small Plates from Spain by Joyce Goldstein – p. 35

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Oh my goodness this sauce is sensational, truly! This sauce took JG’s Wrinkled Potatoes (p. 76) from good to great, amazing even. I also happen to have my own T&T favourite recipe for a sauce for these potatoes but I have to admit, JG’s recipe trumped mine, this was delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Prep is simple though you do have to make your own fresh breadcrumbs. Once you’ve got that out of the way you simply combine them w some garlic in a food processor until a smooth paste is formed. Paprika, salt and cumin seeds (I used fennel) are added. JG has you transfer to a bowl to whisk in oil, vinegar and water to produce a drizzle-able liquid. I just added the liquids to the food processor, gave it a whiz and called it a day. Fantastic!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I got the book in today's mail and once I opened it up, a potato recipe appeared - not sure it is the same but potatos with red (ish) sauce for sure:) Breadcrumbs, please share your favourite recipes from the book! I want to start cooking right now but will be alone with my super picky six-year-old grandboy for the next week and anything that is not white and plain will have to wait till the following week when my most adventurous, also six-year-old, grandboy will be eating my cooking:)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Wrinkled Potatoes - Tapas Sensational Small Plates from Spain by Joyce Goldstein p. 76

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    So delicious! This is one of my favourite tapas and in my experience, it’s the quality of your potatoes and the dipping sauce that will make or break this dish for you. Potatoes are not in season here in Ontario so I was stuck w the grocery store pickings and opted for some mini red, blue and Yukon gold potatoes. My expectations were adjusted accordingly and I’m thrilled to report that we absolutely loved this dish. The potatoes are wonderful and the sauce was killer!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Prep for the potatoes encompasses 2 steps. First, potatoes are boiled ‘til tender in aggressively salted water. My sea salt was fine vs course so I added a little less. Once the potatoes are done they are drained and then placed back in the dry pan to cook atop the stove until their skin wrinkles. This second step was new for me. I’ve made these on a few occasions in the past and though I’ve never done this before, it’s a step I’d repeat as it caused the skins to crisp up a bit and made for a lovely contrasting texture. The insides of the potatoes were tender and creamy…. (are you hungry yet?!!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cooked potatoes are transferred to a serving dish and JG provides 2 options for dipping sauces. I have to say, after reading both recipes, I was actually tempted to opt out and make a T&T fave but in the spirit of trying new recipes for COTMs, I forged ahead w JG’s Mojo Colorado. I’m so glad I did as we LOVED that sauce. I’d bathe in it if I could!! No kidding. These were lovely. I’d highly recommend this dish. btw, IMHO the Yukon gold’s produced the best results of the 3 varieties of potatoes we cooked.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    My review of the sauce is posted above.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Red yellow and blue cuties all wrinkled up -- delightful is this post. (A picture of yourself in a bathtub of the sauce might be a wonder too :) A question though -- the red comes from only paprika -- there are no tomatoes or peppers in it?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Mr. blue room is not an adventurous eater at all* -- but I know he'd like this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      * he IS looking forward to Tex-Mex month..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: blue room

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks br! mr bc loved these so much he suggested we have some w breakfast this morning!! There aren't any peppers or tomatoes in the sauce. The red colouring comes from the paprika. I did use some red wine vinegar which was pinkish in colour but perhaps this enhanced the red somewhat. Here's the breakdown:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        10 cloves garlic, chopped
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1/4 c fresh breadcrumbs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 tbsp hot paprika (I used 50/50 hot sweet mix)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1/2 tsp salt
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 tsp toasted cumin (fennel in my case) seeds
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3/4 c evoo
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1/4 c red wine vinegar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 - 4 tbsp of water (I used approx 1 tbsp)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Note: my T&T recipe uses smoked paprika and I think that would be wonderful in this dip as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Coca de cebolla con pimientos, anchoas y queso Manchego (Traditional Catalan flatbread with caramelized onions, roasted peppers, anchovies, and Manchego cheese) Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America by José Andrés p. 143


                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Even though my coca left something to be desired (I'd use parchment or a silpat to prevent sticking during baking and cook it longer in my oven), this is a very delicious combination of flavors (caramelized onions, piquillo peppers, black olives, anchovies and Manchego cheese). If I was short on time, I would make this again with a slice of toasted, rustic bread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Meatballs with Two Sauces – Tapas Sensational Small Plates from Spain by Joyce Goldstein – p. 150

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I knew we wanted to try a Spanish meatball recipe during this COTM but the challenge was deciding on whose version to test out. I settled on JG’s recipe because I’ve enjoyed such success with all the other recipes I’ve tried from this book and, her preparation method was similar to that of our personal favourite Italian meatball recipe. Happy to report we had no regrets, this was an outstanding meatball dish, we loved it! The meatballs were super-tender and juicy. JG offers two sauce recipes that can be served atop or, alongside and I opted for the wine sauce since the tomato sauce seemed more familiar to us.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Prep is straightforward. Bread is soaked (in water in this case) then excess liquid is squeezed out before adding to a bowl along w ground beef, ground pork, parsley (chives in my case), grated nutmeg, cumin (fennel) seeds, S&P. JG has you roll the meatballs in flour prior to frying. I skipped the flour and baked the meatballs for 40 mins @ 375°. I reheated my meatballs in the Wine Sauce – review below.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Wine Sauce - Tapas Sensational Small Plates from Spain by Joyce Goldstein – p. 152

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        This sauce was sensational with the meatballs (above). Prep is quick and produces a unique and flavourful light & bright-tasting sauce that works beautifully with the rich flavours of the meatballs. A picada is made by combining garlic, almonds, parsley (chives), paprika, saffron, S&P in a mini food processor. This mixture is ultimately incorporated into a broth composed of sautéed onion, white wine and chicken broth. The mixture is simmered and you have the option of finishing the meatballs in the sauce after browning them. This wasn’t necessary our case however I did re-heat the meatballs in the sauce. This was absolutely delicious. I look forward to serving this as a company dish as its flavours are unique and impressive.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The sangria we served alongside made the day a little brighter!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          You're making me want to buy this book!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'd recommend it without hesitation Joan. I love everything about the book. It's well written with clear instructions, good head notes, great wine recommendations that accompany each recipe. Many recipes include alternative preparations. I'd even go as far as saying this is becoming one of my favourite cookbooks. It won't be returning to the "Spanish" shelf in June, I'll need to keep it in the kitchen as I still have a number of dishes we want to try.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Chicken skewers marinated with paprika and oregano (Adobo de pollo) from MoVida Rustica: Spanish Traditions and Recipes by Frank Camorra and Richard Cornish


                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I knew dinner had to be the boneless, skinless chicken thighs in the fridge, but how to make them was the dilemma. Wanting to stay with the month’s Spanish theme, I went to EYB and found this recipe. Chicken thighs are marinated in cumin, oregano, pimenton, garlic, parsley, saffron, salt and olive oil. The recipe says to marinate overnight, but I only did so for 3 hours. We grilled the chicken thighs whole rather than in pieces on skewers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The result was quite delicious. The chicken was moist and infused with the smoky, nutty seasonings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Basque tapa of bonito with soft onion and tomato (Pintxo bonito con cebolla y tomate) from Made in Spain: Spanish Dishes for the American Kitchen by José Andrés and Richard Wolffe p. 65


                                                                                                                                                                                                                          This recipe called out to me because it paired caramelized onions and fish/seafood - a delicious combination discovered this month. We made the caramelized onions the day before so this came together in a snap.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Top toasted bread with tomato pulp (grated and seasoned with olive oil and salt), caramelized onions, tuna flakes (we used ventresca and we almost didn’t have enough to put on the toast because we kept snitching little bites- it was so good and buttery), chives and a drizzle of oil and salt. Yum.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Salt Cod Fritters – Tapas Sensational Small Plates from Spain by Joyce Goldstein – p. 60

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Confession: I’d never cooked with salt cod until I made this recipe!! I love salt fish, I am drawn to it on any menu I peruse and more often than not, I’ll order it. I’d just never worked w it in my own kitchen! Let’s just say that won’t happen again! We thoroughly enjoyed it in this recipe and I loved working with it and watching it transform from hard, crusty mess into tender, flaky, flavourful fish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Obviously this isn’t a dish for a hurried weeknight meal. This is a recipe that weekends are made for, not to be rushed. Prep begins w the soaking of the cod. JG has you soak it in water for 36 to 48 hours, changing the water several times along the way. Fish is then drained and placed in a saucepan w a water/milk mixture and simmered until tender. Once removed from the heat and drained, the meat is broken down and placed in a food processor for a whiz until it is almost pureed. JG does mention oil can be added to soften the meat but that wasn’t necessary in my case. As the cod cools, potatoes are boiled then riced and added to a bowl along w the cooled fish, and some sautéed onion and garlic. I added a sautéed Serrano chili to the mix as well. Eggs, parsley (chives) and flour join the party along w some paprika and black pepper. While chilling was optional, JG does note it aids in the shaping process so I opted to do this. Instead of preparing balls, I elected to create patties since I already had meatballs on my tapas menu and, I thought I could use less oil for frying given that my patties wouldn’t be as tall as a ball would be. The mixture is coated in dried breadcrumbs prior to frying.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I held prepared patties in my warming oven on a paper towel lined wire rack and they didn’t suffer for the wait. We also re-heated some later in the toaster oven and they emerged crispy on the outside, tender on the inside.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            These were delicious. The salty fish was distinct but not overpowering and the onions added a nice sweetness to the mix. JG notes that fritters are typically served w aioli. We served with aioli and a chili-lime sauce. The latter won the day with the acidity proving to be the perfect foil for the richness of the potatoes and the fried flavours.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Breadcrumbs, those look amazing. I have not yet used the salt-cod I purchased - and have never cooked with this ingredient before either. Do you recall what brand ( if any) you got? I may give this a try. Do you mind paraphrasing the chili lime sauce? It sounds like a great foil.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Blythe spirit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Thanks Blythe! Here you go:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Chili-lime Sauce

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/2 c white sugar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/ 2 c white vinegar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Thai bird chili - chopped
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                zest of 1/2 lime
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Tbsp lime juice
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Tbsp soy sauce

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Heat the first 4 ingredients in a small pan until sugar has dissolved then remove from heat and stir in the lime juice and soy sauce. I usually garnish w some thinly sliced rings of Thai bird chilis. Let me know if you try this Blythe. This is a recipe I've adapted from one by Jill Dupleix.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks BC - it's on my agenda for next weekend.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Ensaladilla rusa con juevas de trucha (Classic potato salad with crunchy trout roe) Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America by Jose Andres p. 21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I managed to sneak in a Spanish recipe for our Memorial Day BBQ with a Spanish-style potato salad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              This version has more tuna and hard-boiled eggs than most other ensaladilla rusa recipes I've seen, making it very rich (in a good way).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Boiled russet potatoes and carrots are cut into 1" cubes, then add tuna, peas, chopped boiled eggs and stir in mayonaise (made from scratch with a combination of sunflower oil and olive oil). This is served at room temperature. The recipe says to finish with a touch of olive oil and some trout roe . Had I served it to my family like that it would have gone untouched, but I did try a very small portion with salmon roe and olive oil to see what it would be like. The roe adds another textural element and the olive oil adds additional richness, but neither are really necessary to the dish- just gilding the lily. Would definitely make this again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. I've been on a bit of a Spanish cooking kick lately, mostly inspired by watching the Jose Andres "Made in Spain" series. Which got me to check back in on this thread, which has a been a great resource and really expanded the horizons even further. A big thank you to all for the great leads on books and recipes!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I love Jose Andres's recipes (I have Made in Spain, Tapas and one of his in Spanish). Looking forward to reading about your adventures.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Anyone out there have experience with rabbit paella? I'm hoping to make it tomorrow if I can find the snails, and have been hemming and hawing between the Foods & Wines of Spain (Casas) recipe and the Cuisines of Spain (Barrenechea) version. Other suggestions and advice welcome!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  10 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ohhhhh... Rabbit paella. I'm staying tuned!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      will report back......meanwhile do you mind please keeping the fingers crossed for me? If things (i.e. the weather) work out this will be my first paella cooked on the grill....could be interesting....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Oh I'll surely cross everything I have. As I understand the tradition paella is Supposed to be cooked outside, with copious amounts of beverage drunk with friends around the fire. (or is that the other way around?)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I have both books so I'll check and follow along. In bocca di lupo, Qianning.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks...meanwhile, the mouth of the wolf? that's a new one on me....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            It's what opera singers say before they go on stage, hoping their voice is perfect that night and any sour notes will jump into the wolf's mouth... It's akin to Break a Leg.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sounds much more agreeable than the latter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Thanks. I will remember that one.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Alas the weather and more importantly the difficulty in getting snails meant that the paella experiment got delayed for now. But we did have the rabbit in a marvelous Hunter's style from Casas's Food & Wine of Spain.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            yes, many times. but not in a paella.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. Gee, somehow I was unaware of this thread's existence; I have a few things I could have reviewed recently. The companion threads aren't listed in the cotm archives at all, are they? There are probably many more that I'm missing out on....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Thank you again, Gio! I really should pay more attention to these things.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. MADE IN SPAIN, and TAPAS both by Jose Andres

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Beyond the Patatas Bravas, we had fun trying several recipes from these books. Among the more memorable successes were:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Bacalao al Pil Pil, In this dish the cod, with a little help, makes its own sauce. A what a magical sauce it is, briny and bright infused with garlic and with perfectly smooth texture. We had this the same night as the patatas bravas, and good as the sauce was with the fish, it was a toss up which sauce was better with the potatoes the bravas or the pil pil.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Fried Piquillo Peppers Stuffed with Cheese, this tapa was a great little before dinner treat to use up a couple of extra piquillos from an open jar. I'm not sure I'd make it often (those piquillos are a bit pricey!), but if I had a few extra peppers on hand this dish would come to mind imediately.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Your bacalao looks gorgeous and the sauce looks like it emulsified beautifully! I haven't tried Jose's version of this dish, but am tempted to now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The piquillo peppers with cheese sound like a tasty treat too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Well if you do try the Bacalao in Pil Pil, Mr. QN's secret to getting the sauce to emulsify was using, of all things, a Japanese Matcha whisk. It worked perfectly!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Both dishes look terrific, Q. How long did you have to soak the salt cod? Did you use water or milk? I think my mother soaked it in water but I can't really remember. I know we only had it on Christmas Eve, two different versions. One in a tomato sauce, the typical Baccala, the other in a salad w potatoes and green beans.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi Gio--we used water and soaked for 36hrs. I think our water to fish ratio was a bit low, the end result was still a bit too salty, but in previous rounds we've gone over board soaking too long in too much water, with bland results, so we are still looking for the right ratio/timing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I've seen several intriguing bacalao salads during my Spanish book frenzy, one of those and cod fritters are both on the "too try" list.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I can see salt cod in tomato sauce being really yummy, the sweet/salty fish playing off the sweet/sour from the tomatoes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. THE CUISINES OF SPAIN by Teresa Barrenchea

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                After the Andres books this was the next book from this thread that I got out of the library. We had some wonderful dishes from this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Chard with Raisins and Pine Nuts was a hit with both of us. I did sub slivered almonds for the pine nuts, but otherwise made it as written--the chard, serrano ham, raisins, nuts combination is perfectly balanced both for flavor and texture, and the dish comes together quickly and easily.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Wild Salmon with Cider was the main dish for the evening we had the chard. My cider was a lovely bottle of Farnum Hill's Farmouse cider, but in truth the piece of frozen wild salmon I bought wasn't the best, perhaps that's why we found this dish a tad flat. To give it a bit more pop I decided to go off recipe, and reduced the sauce a bit and added a teaspoon more butter, which helped a lot.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Clams in Salsa Verde. There was a lot to like about this, the sauce/both was indeed delicious, the balance just right; but there was one major problem with this method of cooking almejas en salsa verde, no matter what clams cooked twice are going to be tough. Mine certainly were over cooked for my taste. Next time I'm going to try Casas's method of using one batch of clams for the broth and another batch for serving.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Fava Beans with Jamon Serrano and Hard Boiled Egg was a real treat. By the time I double shucked the fresh favas there wasn't very much volume left even for my half batch, but what they lacked in bulk they made up for in flavor, and again the balance of earthy, sweet, and salty was terrific, we really enjoyed this dish very much.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Fava Beans with Jamon Serrano and Hard Boiled Egg is similar to a once-a-year favorite of mine, Salami with Raw Favas, Mint, & Manchego Cheese from Zuni ( http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/3559... ). I buy about as many favas as will fit in one of those plastic produce bags, stash myself in front of the TV for at least an hour of news to peel them, make the whole recipe, and DON’T SHARE. Anyone who wants fresh, raw favas can peel their own. Hope Mr. QN was appropriately appreciative.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi Joan N--late to see this, but had to laugh at the "DON'T SHARE", which is so contrary to your usual self as to be truly comical.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Meanwhile, I'm a newbie to fresh favas. I've only very recently figured out that favas=broad beans (which I love); favas ≠ limas (one of two vegetables that I loathe).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Lentil Salad w/ Blue Valdeon Cheese, pg. 29 Made In Spain, J. Andres

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Well it took a while but I finally found a Jose Andres recipe that just didn't work for us. This was one of those cases where each of the salad components; lentils boiled in garlic, onion, bay, olive oil; a sherry vinegar vinaigrette which incorporates the reduced lentil cooking liquid; diced tomato, & bell pepper; and a good piece of Valdeon cheese, is something that tasted great on its own, but completely failed for us when mixed together.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The flavors and textures contrasted in a jarring way for us, nothing about it seemed balanced and serving it with a simply grilled piece of fish didn't help either. Nothing about this meal worked for us. Unusually for me, I threw out the leftovers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Bummer. I have a list of J. Andres recipes to try and this was one of them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. White Sangria, Jose Andres, Made in Spain, pg. 229

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I'm not usually a huge white sangria person, but our guests wanted white, and you know what this was lovely. Mr. QN made it, using grapes, strawberries and peaches for the fruit. The sprig of mint really adds something.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. THE NEW SPANISH TABLE by Anya von Bremzen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sizzling Garlic Shrimp, Pg. ?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      This was absolutely delicious. Lots of garlic, lots of Spanish olive oil and honks crusty bread with which to savor the scrumptious juices. I don't have the book with me but the recipe is in the link I provided. We did not have the more authentic small Atlantic shrimp but the larger Florida Gulf pink shrimp which can be used as well. That's the only substitution we had to make. But this I know - I'm convinced I must buy a cazuela or three. G used our cast iron skillet which worked beautifully, though.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The shrimp were perfectly cooked; succulent, juicy, garlicky , all the taste sensations we were hoping for. Parsley added a light herbal flavor. We didn't cut any corners here and used the full cup of olive oil as called for so there was a goodly amount of sauce to drench the bread. The side dish was my ever present salad of chopped tomatoes, cucumber, and red onion w cider vinegar dressing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Von Bremzen says the recipe can be used with mushrooms, clams, or small pieces of chicken. That sounds appealing to me given our success with shrimp. I read JoanN's review of the chicken variation but this preparation is a little different than the recipe she describes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        THE NEW SPANISH TABLE by Anya von Bremzen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sizzling Garlic Shrimp, Pg. 49, Chicken Variation

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Four days later and here I am again. I won't be satisfied till each of the variations to the garlicky shrimp recipe is made. There's still mushroom, and clams recipes to go. For this we had boneless skinless chicken breasts.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        All the ingredients are the same as the shrimp, however this garlicky chicken was not as Wow-ish as the shrimp but with a bit of fiddling it could be. G made this entirely by himself and didn't take into account the difference in weight of the chicken versus the shrimp. More chicken necessitates at least doubling the seasonings. Plus I thought the chicken needs more salt and pepper before cooking, a hit of hot red pepper flakes, and perhaps a slug of white wine.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        All that aside the dish was very tasty and I'd certainly make it again for a quick weeknight meal that has minimal prepping time. The whole thing is over in about 25 minutes! A delicious watermelon salad from Raising the Salad Bar and hunks (not honks as above) of crusty bread accompanied.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My first experience with this dish was at small Spanish style restaurant in, of all places, Ecuador. It was served in a shallow hot casserole dish, with about a half inch of bubbling oil, filled with small shrimp and garlic. The oil continued to bubble at the table for several minutes. With a crusty baguette, this was enough for a satisfying and memorable meal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I can just imagine how delicious that meal was. The "shallow hot casserole dish" is a cazuela The shrimp was cooked in that terra cotta dish and it continued to cook after being removed from the flame. You had the authentic real deal, Paul.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Lobster and Mushroom Paella, pg. 125, Made in Spain by J. Andres

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I've made prettier paella, more complex paella, and more "authentic" paella. But this was the tastiest I've ever had or made.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Three points:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1) I used Jasper White's "Savory Lobster Broth" in place of Jose's stock--and added some smoked paprika to the rice to compensate for the lack of peppers in JW's broth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2) This was cooked over fire--still not sure on the liquid to rice ratio for bomba cooked over fire, but I think upping the ante by 25% is a safe bet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3) Alioli, my obsession for this summer, really sets this over the top---assuming you like strong garlic flavor.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          15 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Gloriosky, Zero that last photo of the finished paella is Fabulous! So far I'm batting zero for paella success.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Kind of shocked to read that, Gio. Have you tried Rick Moonen's? or Casas's a la Valenciana? The Casas is my favorite, but the Moonen is quite a bit less complicated and still awfully good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I've tried two paella recipes so far. One from one of Ottolenghi's cookbooks - a vegetable paella - and one from a book I can't remember at the moment. In both attempts everything tasted pretty good but the rice never did seem as if it had cooked enough. Granted I didn't use Bomba rice but Carnaroli which I thought should have worked but perhaps that was the cause of the failure..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That's surprising, Gio. I'm not at all experienced at paella I've made the vegetable Paella in Plenty twice (once a double batch in two pans for a big holiday dinner), both times using carnaroli, and the rice turned out well (though I didn't get soccarat, but I wasn't using a paella pan either)..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I've used Carnaroli on ocassion, but Bomba really is the bomb.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Take a look at Moonen's recipe, if you're interested in pursuing this, that is. It's comparatively quick and easy. I only tried it fairly recently based on LulusMom's praise and was very glad I did.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks both Caitlin and Joan. I'll look at Moonen's recipe. I have a paella pan so all I need is the Bomba. The Carnarolli is long gone. I would really like to be able to get a well cooked paella as the concept intrigues me. Also perhaps I need to increase the amount of liquid so the rice is not al dente at the finish and does create that elusive soccarat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I've been making paella for years and never once was rewarded with soccarat. I'm not even convinced it can be achieved with an oven-cooked paella. But I just don't worry about it. I'm happy to go to Koreatown for dolsot bipimbop when I have a craving for that crusty layer of rice.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I've never had the Moonen chicken and seafood paella fail on me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Can't possibly go wrong with a paella based on JW's lobster broth. It would be interesting to know if the paella would be anywhere near as good using Adres's stock, but I doubt any of us will ever know.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    So true Joan, that JW broth is just made for rice, Andres's stock recipe looked interesting, but I don't think I'll ever look back from the JW recipe. And thanks again for bringing "Lobster at Home" to my attention, it really has improved the repertoire.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Credit where credit is due. It was this post that led me to the book: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/401863

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Rubee's photos and descriptions, especially of the Baked Stuffed Lobster, had me coveting the book from the moment she mentioned it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There I go again with the Lobster Envy.....
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    That sounds (and looks!) just marvellous.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Allegra_K

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      You know I honestly think this is a kinda homely looking dish; but tasty, very tasty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Gorgeous! I think alioli does add so much to certain dishes. This has been on my list for a while- I may have to try it before the summer is over. A very different, but very good Andres recipe is his chicken paella (made with chanterelles, green beans and chicken thighs).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: BigSal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hope you do--would love to hear your thoughts on the flavors.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks for the nod on his chicken paella....we do love rice dishes around here!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Paella de Pollo y Setas (Chicken & Mushroom Paella) from A Taste of Spain in America by José Andrés


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Dinner Monday night. I must admit that I am so smitten with this dish, I have not tried other recipes for fear that it will not be as good as this one. We only make this in the warmer weather so we can grill it outside. This comes together very quickly if you already have the sofrito (tomatoes, pimentón, onions, sugar, tomato paste) and broth made. I keep sofrito (and chicken broth) in the freezer so we can make this recipe any time the craving hits.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We use a larger paella (and consequently extra broth) to get a finer-textured rice with a rather than a moister rice.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Small pieces of chicken legs (boneless, skin-on thighs for us) are browned and then set aside. Next sauté mushrooms (we only use chanterelles to make this recipe because it is not the same without them) until golden, add green beans (we used romano beans from the market) and garlic. Return the chicken to the pan and add jamón serrano. Next add white wine and reduce, then the sofrito and cook for a few minutes then add the broth, saffron and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, add rice (bomba) and salt and cook 5 minutes. Finish by cooking at a slow boil for 10 minutes (do not stir) and rest off the heat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      This is an umami-rich dish. The sofrito, broth, mushrooms and jamón serrano come together to make this so craveworthy.