aAt this time of year, with the longest day of the year beginning this week, thoughts of eating long evening tapas are hardly far from my culinary thoughts. Making tapas often takes a long time in the kitchen – salt cod, croqueta and aioli take a long time to make. But, to my mind, it’s all part of the occasion: potter about the kitchen, sip for a siesta, and possibly spend an hour or so enjoying the sunset as you prepare… salad,
Salt Cod with Grated Tomatoes and Dill Oil (pictured above)
salt cod, or bacalao, is one of those things that seems harder to make than it actually is. Try it once – at least not to show yourself how easy it can be – and you’ll soon be doing it again to show off to friends. Serve with crusty bread and a large leafy salad.
to submit 25 minutes
treatment 1 hour+
cook 15 minutes
500 grams skinless cod loincut into 4 equal pieces
tsp castor sugar
flaky sea salt
160 ml olive oil
3 garlic cloves, Peeled – 2 grated lightly with a large knife, the other crushed
1 lemon – Finely chop the zest into 5 strips, then squeeze out the juice, to get 1 1/2 tbsp.
4 plum tomatoes (400 grams pure)
1 onionPeel and cut into thin rounds (30 grams net)
10 grams fresh dill leaves
tsp cumin seedsToast and grind lightly in mortar
tsp Aleppo chili
First, treat the cod. Grind sugar and two teaspoons of flaked salt in a mortar until almost fine. Dry the cod pieces and place them on a tray. Coat the fish evenly with the salt mixture and leave to cure at room temperature for an hour or two—don’t leave it out longer, or it will become too salty.
Once the cod is done, heat the oven to 180C (160C fan)/350F/Gas 4.
Wash the fish thoroughly under cold running water, then pat dry and put in a small, ovenproof saute pan that fits snugly. Pour in 100 ml of oil, add crushed garlic and strips of lemon zest and cover with a sheet of greaseproof paper. Bake for 12 minutes, until cooked through, then remove from oven, remove paper, and set aside for five minutes.
Meanwhile, grate the tomatoes in a grated bowl and remove the skin. Add half a teaspoon of flaked salt, then pour into a small sieve placed in a bowl and leave to drain for five minutes. Drain the tomato water (or save it for another use), then put the pulp in a bowl and mix with two tablespoons oil, crushed garlic and one tablespoon lemon juice.
Put the chickpeas in a small bowl with the remaining teaspoon of lemon juice and one-eighth teaspoon of salt, mix, and then set aside so that the pickle rises gently.
To make dill oil, put the remaining two tablespoons oil and dill in the small bowl of a food processor and blitz until the mixture is green and almost smooth (alternatively, do so with a pestle and mortar). do).
Place tomatoes on a lined platter, then, using a spatula, gently lift cod pieces from oil (save confit oil for frying other seafood) and place over tomatoes. Spoon over the dill oil, sprinkle the chickpeas, cumin, and chili over the top, and serve.
Goat’s Cheese Croquettes with Marmalade Alioli
Croquettes are made and loved throughout Europe, and in Spain, with ham, cheese or potatoes. croquetas are particularly popular. This recipe combines salty goat’s cheese with bitter-sweet marmalade, and is a great snack to share.
to submit Twenty minutes
rest 1 hour 30 minutes
cook 45 minutes
300 g king edward potatoes (ie, about 2), peeled and cut into 3cm dice
fine sea salt and pepper
300 g soft goat’s cheesePeel removed, roughly chopped (230 g)
20 grams mangopeel removed, finely grated
tbsp henna leavesfinely chopped
10 grams (3⅓ Tbsp) Chivesfinely chopped
2-3 lemons – grate the zest finely, to get 1½, to make juice, to get 2 tbsp, and cut the rest into wedges
75 grams plain flour
150 grams panko breadcrumbs
100 ml vegetable oilto fry
2 garlic bulbs
2 tablespoons Seville (or other bitter orange) marmalade
2 egg yolks
75 ml olive oil
75 ml vegetable oil
Preheat oven to 240C (220C fan) / 475F/Gas 9. Trim the top fifth of both garlic bulbs, to expose the cloves, then sprinkle on an eighth of a teaspoon salt and wrap individually in squares of foil. Roast for 20 minutes until softened, then remove, leave to cool, and put in the fridge with all other alioli ingredients—if they’re fridge-chilled, the texture of the alioli will be better.
Meanwhile, put potatoes and a tablespoon of salt in a medium-sized saucepan, add a liter of water, and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to medium and cook for 15 minutes until soft. Drain in a colander, leave to steam dry for five minutes, then return to dry pan and mash smooth. Return to medium heat and add cheese, rosemary, chives, one-eighth of a teaspoon salt, and a fine grater of black pepper, and cook for five minutes, stirring constantly, until cheese melts. Remove from heat and add lemon zest.
Place a large piece of reusable kitchen wrap on a work surface and center the potato mixture. Roll up to wrap filling, twist ends to seal, roll into sausages about 2½ cm-thick and refrigerate for one hour.
Meanwhile, make allioli. Squeeze the pulp of the garlic from its papaya peel, put it in a small food processor along with the marmalade, lemon juice, egg yolk, and teaspoon salt, and smooth. With motor running, slowly pour in olive and vegetable oils until you have an emulsified mayonnaise, then transfer to a small bowl and refrigerate.
Now for the crochets. Sift flour, breadcrumbs and eggs into three separate large bowls. Open the potato mixture to 3 cm. Cut lengthwise, each weighing about 15 grams. Working with four croquettes at a time, roll them in flour, dip in egg, shake off any excess, then coat in breadcrumbs. Set aside on a tray, repeating with the remaining croquette mixture, then refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Heat 100ml vegetable oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Once it’s hot, add half the croquettes and fry until golden and hot, 90 seconds to two minutes on each side. Remove to a plate covered with kitchen paper, sprinkle with a pinch of salt, and repeat with the remaining croquettes.
While the croquettes are still hot, arrange them on a platter and serve with the alioli and lemon wedges.
Sauteed Eggplant and Red Pepper with Fideau Picada
In many parts of Spain, a picada Commonly used to season the dish during cooking. I use it here as a condiment, to bring some extra freshness to the finished dish. To save time, by all means use store-bought roasted eggplant and peppers instead.
to submit 25 minutes
cook 1 Hour
2 tbsp olive oilplus 1 tsp extra
3 big red chilies (335 grams)
2 eggplants (600 grams)
fine sea salt and pepper
250g Wheat Vermicelli Pasta Nest (or angel hair pasta), crumbled into roughly 3cm lengths
2 onionspeeled and thinly sliced
3 garlic clovespeeled and thinly sliced
1 tbsp tomato paste
tsp red capsicum
1 large plum tomatoRoughly grated and peel removed (180 g)
500 ml vegetable stock
1 lemoncut into 6 wedges
1 piece stale breadCrusts removed (35 g)
60 ml olive oil
35 grams boiled almonds
1 cascabel pepperStem and seeds removed, flesh roughly crushed
15 grams (4 tablespoons) flattened oregano leavesfinely chopped
5 grams dill leavesfinely chopped
1 garlic clovepeeled and crushed
Set a pan on high heat and ventilate your kitchen. Rub the extra tablespoon oil all over the peppers and eggplant, then place them in the hot pan and grill, turning occasionally, for 20–30 minutes, until they’re completely charred; Remove each vegetable when ready. Transfer to a tray and leave to cool. Once the peppers and aubergine are cool enough to handle, peel and remove the skins, remove and discard the stems, pith and seeds from the peppers, then cut the pepper and aubergine flesh into 1-cm-thick strands. Tear it Place on a large plate, scatter over one-eighth of a teaspoon of salt and keep aside.
Meanwhile, place a large, 28 cm, nonstick frying pan with the lid on you over medium-high heat. Add vermicelli, and toast, stirring frequently, for three to four minutes, until mostly deep golden, but still with some unsweetened strands. Take out the pasta in a bowl.
Return the pan to the heat, add the remaining two tablespoons oil, then fry the onions, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes, until lightly golden and tender. Add garlic, tomato paste and paprika, cook for another three minutes until fragrant, then mix in vermicelli. Add grated tomatoes, stock, a teaspoon of salt and a fine grind of black pepper, then arrange the eggplant and pepper strands in six or seven piles on top, leaving gaps in between for pasta to see through. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to medium and let it simmer for 10-12 minutes, until all the liquid is absorbed.
To ensure a crisp base, remove the lid, turn the heat to medium-low and cook without stirring, saving the pan halfway through, for 10–12 minutes, until the pasta on the edge of the pan is facing inside. Curls did not happen. You want the base to be crisp but not burnt. Remove from heat and set aside to rest for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, make picada. Place a small frying pan over medium heat, fry the bread for a minute or two on each side until lightly browned, then transfer to a plate.
In the same pan, add oil and almonds and fry for three to four minutes till they become light golden. Stir in Cascabel peppers, remove from heat, leave to cool, then put in a small food processor. Blitz the cascabel mixture until almost cured, then crumble into the bread and pulse into coarse crumbs. Tip in a small bowl and stir in parsley, dill and a quarter teaspoon salt.
Pour half the picada over the fideau and serve with lemon wedges and remaining picada straight from the pan.