Results tagged “Spain”

Spanish Tapas party class, Thurs 1st Dec 2011

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smtortillacanapes0002.JPGCome along for an informal class to learn how to make classic Spanish tapas dishes. Cooking together will be interspersed with eating tapas and drinking rioja and sherry in a relaxed atmosphere. 

You will learn how to make a beautiful array of small bites and finger food, perfect for Christmas parties, and get to take home all the recipes and leftover tapas!


smoliveanchovychillipinxos0005.JPGSpanish tortilla with piquillo peppers
Jamon or Manchego cheese croquetas
Manzanilla olive, anchovy & pickled chilli pintxos
Chilled beetroot gazpacho shots
Chorizo-style meatballs
Mini crema catalana puddings



smcroquetas0001.jpg"I really learnt a lot about techniques, flavours and much much more."

“We had a ball!  It was a fantastic class.”

“Anna makes us feel so welcome. I really enjoy the classes and the incredible meals."


Date:  Thursday 1st December 2011

Smallcremecaramel0007.JPGTime:  6.30pm - 10pm

Location:  London N5 (Arsenal tube 2 mins walk)

Price:  £50.  Or £90 for two places.

To book:  Email Anna
  Please read the booking terms & conditions before booking your place.  Thank you.



Oil, vinegar and phonological assimilation

morocco, spain
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Smmoroccanolives0001.JPG

Some olives in Morocco. Although they could
just as easily be in Spain.

I'd always wondered why the oil and vinegar seemed to be labelled wrong in Spain.  If, like me, you're more familiar with Italian than Spanish, and you see two bottles on the table, one labelled "aceite", you'd be pretty sure that was the vinegar.  You'd be wrong, though - although admittedly you'd work it out pretty sharpish if you saw that the other one was labelled "vinagre".  Or just tasted it, I suppose.

The Italian aceto (vinegar) comes from the Latin acer meaning 'sharp' or 'sour', and that's where we get English words like acid and acetic from too.  (Even the word vinegar comes this way, in fact, via the French vin aigre or 'sour wine').  Similarly, the word for 'oil' seems to have Latin origins in most European languages - the Latin oleum gives us oglio, oil, Öl, huile and so on.  So why would Spanish (a Romance, i.e. Latin-based language) be so different, and where does their word for 'oil', aceite, come from?  Well, now that we've made it to Morocco, all becomes clear ...

In search of the perfect pig

spain
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Smcastellsign0001.jpgAs we got higher into the Pyrenees, the road signs got gradually less French.  Call it Occitan, call it Catalan - whichever way you look at it we were moving into new territory.  As if to illustrate the point, we also quickly found ourselves in the middle of the biggest hailstorm I've ever seen.  This, of course, was the perfect moment to discover that our sunroof didn't seal properly.

Smpatanegra0001.jpgWe'd come to Spain to settle an argument.  Ever since visiting Hungary, something had been nagging away at us (and I don't just mean Barnaby).  Which is the true king of pigs?  In the Spanish corner, the pata negra pig, black of foot, fed on acorns and cossetted like a prize sumo wrestler (do sumo wrestlers eat acorns? Probably).  In the Hungarian corner, the mangalica, curly of hair, and a whacking 70% body fat.  Both tasty, no doubt - but in the world of cured pork products there can be only one winner.  Only time, and extensive sampling, would tell ...

The case of the Arabic aubergine

spain
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Spanish chorizo, cherry tomato and butter bean salad

spain
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This week I bring you a more-ish warm salad, inspired by that Moorish London restaurant on Exmouth Market. This one's for Tara, who has abandoned me at Chez Panisse to go and work at Moro for a while. Hopefully I'll get some more yummy Spanish recipes from her as a result.

Smchorizobutterbeansalad0010_r1a.jpgAll still goes well in the restaurant kitchen. I've had good days (another soup proclaimed 'delicious' by the chef), bad days (a soup proclaimed only fit for the compost), fun days (sausage-stuffing, lemon-preserving, chicken-boning kinda days) and bizarre days (such as the day I lost my bra strap somewhere in the restaurant, lord knows how or when, but it must be there somewhere...).

Chorizo

mexico, spain
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Chorizo is pronounced ‘chorissoh’ or, in some parts of Spain, ‘chorithoh’, but never ‘choritzoh’, please.

It comes in all sorts of varieties in many countries around the world, notably Spain, Portugal and Mexico, but also India (Goa, due to Portuguese colonial presence), Argentina and the Philippines.

Spanish chorizo is usually, but not always, cured, and therefore edible as is, sliced.  It’s made from coarsely chopped fatty pork and flavoured with garlic and smoked paprika.  It can be hot - ‘picante’, or sweet - ‘dulce’.

Mexican chorizo, on the other hand, is a very different sausage - made from ground pork, flavoured with additional spices such as cinnamon, and importantly, requires cooking.
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