Making Spanish dishes often feels like taking a trip to the origin of my Sardinian heritage. As Sardinia was invaded by the Spanish for many years, I always look for similarities with their culture: from the syntax, to the societal constructs, to the ingredients we put on our table. Almonds are definitely a staple in both Spanish and Sardinian cuisines. In Sardinia we have bitter … Continue reading Pollo en Pepitoria – A Spanish Sunday Lunch
Having a Spanish partner means not only finding curious similarities with the traditional Sardinian cooking (Sardinia was a Spanish colony for centuries, and this becomes evident at the dinner table), but, more importantly, it means exploring the differences. For example I am particularly fascinated by the influence that the Arabs had on Spanish culture and cuisine. This dish is a popular Sevillian tapa, in which the cumin seeds and paprika will titillate your palate: these spices makes this very simple dish an unforgettable starter for your guests and a perfect dinner fix when all you have at home is cans and spinach!
The heatwave continues and, between weekend barbecues, I keep on basing my diet on cold soups! Very practical, they solve both packed lunches and lazy dinners. But they are also a combination of seasonal nutrition and incredible flavour. Salmorejo is more of a cream rather than a soup – what we would call in Italian vellutata (lit. made of velvet) – it’s a proud dish from Cordoba and very much dislikes to be so often associated with the liquid, drinkable cousin, Gazpacho. So much so that this year Cordoba university conducted a scientific study to find the perfect consolidation of ingredients for Salmorejo, with the aim of creating some sort of controlled designation of origin and standardize the perfect proportions for its final homogeneous result. This recipe will serve up an excellent Salmorejo: bring it to its utmost by relying on good quality seasonal tomatoes and garnishing it with well-sourced fresh ingredients. It’s also suitable for vegans!
After visiting Madrid and discovering the highlights of Spanish traditional cuisine, I naturally felt like trying to reproduce it at home. Following the same idea as the Sardinian hen broth – a dish that is designed to feed a whole family reunited for a weekend meal; and in the same fashion, Cocido delivers several dishes on the table in one go. The richness of the meats and the goodness of the veggies, the comfort of the soup and the flavour of the chickpeas all come together to create a small feast that will fill up your table and stomach and leave you incredibly satisfied on a chilly March day.
1 chicken of the weight of 2kg max, even better if you can get a small hen
200 g cut of beef for stews
50 g pancetta
150 g piece of bacon
1 small piece of ham bone (which I imported from Spain, but any bone would do)
1 chorizo for cooking
1 morcilla for cooking
200 g chickpeas
1 green cabbage
2 cloves of garlic
Salt and pepper