Tag Archives: spain

Roasted Spanish style haddock with red peppers

As students up and down the country prepare themselves to move into their Freshmen’s halls or flat-shares, this is a cheap and very tasty recipe to warm up an autumn evening in a new city! A fast and healthy recipe, all cupboard based, to save time and money. The flavours are inspired by a couple of recent Spanish week-ends and the endless and delicious tapas tasted, where only a few but excellent ingredients help produce food that sing in the soul!

Haddock is a firm fleshed fish with no bones and a great source of omegas, lean protein and important minerals to nurture hungry young brains. It is very nice frozen so no need to look for fresh one unless you are near the sea. This dish is all cupboard or frozen ingredients so easy and cheap to source and it only boasts 3 to 4 ingredients (plus some seasoning) so it is real quick to put together. Hardware wise, all you need is an oven proof dish and the oven that goes with it.

Spanish red

Spanish red

Ingredients list

  • Frozen haddock, 1 filet per person
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • ½ red pepper, chopped

Seasoning:

  • Sweet paprika, 1 tsp
  • salt and pepper
  • A little olive oil
  • Quarter of  a lemon to serve

Lay the fillet (still frozen) in a dish and pour all the ingredients on top.

Swing it into the oven at 180° and bake for 30min or until the fish is tender and totally defrosted. Cooking frozen fish without defrosting is key to getting a tender but firm and tasty end dish rather than soggy and unappetising flesh… Unlike meat, fish should always be cooked frozen!

Summer evening on a beach somewhere...

Summer evening on a beach somewhere last month…

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Put a spring in your plate – with a Tortilla Sacramento…

A week end in Granada got me a whiff and a taste of spring, ahead of it really arriving here. Granada is a baking hot Andalusian town laying at the foot of a snow capped Sierra, the fire and the ice ; a cool arab paradise in gypsy flamenco dress, an oxymoron of a place that is hard to define and delicious to loose yourselves in…

In April, the gardens of the Generalife are bursting with roses and carnations, a riot of spring flowers everywhere and the lingering scent of orange blossom and heady climbing roses following you around like a music… I came back wanting more : Especially more colour, more taste, more fragrance! So I recreated one of the local dishes that encapsulated all of my longings: Tortilla Sacramento.

Sacramento is the gipsy quarter from which you have an incredible view over the red walls of the Alhambra palaces and gardens. A view immortalised by numerous painters and engravers over the centuries but still magic when you “recognise” it under the moonlight. Imagine a warm April night with a cool breeze and the towers of the palace of the last Moors of Spain in front of you… A palace full of legends, songs and poems…

Tortilla Sacramento for 4

Ingredients list:

  • Eggs, two per persons: 8 here
  • Steamed asparagus, 6/8
  • Shallot, 1 sliced finely
  • yellow pepper, sliced, 1
  • Petit pois or garden peas, 1 small handful
  • Olive oil to fry
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Parsley and chives, a few sprigs
  • Optional: shreds of spanish ham to top it and Pedro Jimenez reduction to decorate!

NOTE TO SELF: There is not one dish that can’t be improved with a swish of Pedro Jimenez wine reduction – Take my word for it… This is a delicacy I just brought back from Spain: a sticky, spicy and sweet wine reduction that goes with ab-so-lu-tely everything from fresh fruit to foie gras and beyond…

Here dishes without "Pedro" and with "Pedro"! See the difference?

Here dishes without “Pedro” and with “Pedro”!
See the difference? Salad in next post…

 

Steam and prepare the chosen vegetables. The idea is to go for seasonal, fresh and colourful! Fry the shallots in olive oil, fry the sweet peppers and quickly cook the peas (fresh or frozen). Break the eggs and proceed to make your omelette in the usual way but pile it high with vegetables and herbs and only cook it on one side. Serve warm IN THE PAN with a swish of Pedro Jimenez reduction – if you have any.

Rioting colours in my pan

Rioting colours in my pan

My address book in Granada:

The Alhambra Palace Hotel for its incredible balcony over the Sierra Nevada and its HUGE gin and tonic served in a large wine glass. Salud!

Los Italianos, for the best ice-cream ever – particularly the chestnut  and the orange flavours. An institution very near the cathedral. Expect long queues that nobody respects.

Try the tapas and also the wonderful “churros con chocolate” served in the many restaurants around the cathedral – Look out for “Churrerias” for a treat at any time of the day and night!

Enjoying breakfast at 3pm...

Enjoying breakfast at 3pm…

Restaurante Chikito  for the unique “Tortilla Sacramento de la case” that inspired this post and its cool outdoor space.