Hello dear readers! I’m sorry I haven’t been writing much lately…I’ve been in a bit of a funk. My cuh-RAY-zee meds got screwed up and it really sort of effed me right up. Things are better now…ye olde kinks have been worked out and I’m back to being only an average level of mental rather than full on nuts. This is a good thing…because today I have a special treat for y’all. Tamales!
Last month I read on someone’s blog about a new group called Recipes to Rival (to find out how to join, scroll down the sidebar), which is kind of a savory counterpart to the Daring Bakers…
I’m sure most of you are already familiar with Paella…one of the quintessential foods of Spain. You’re probably aware that paella is made with rice, saffron, a few vegetables and seafood or meat, or a combination of the two.
The latter is what I want to share with you today…the Mixed Paella, or Paella Mixta. If you’re like me, whenever you have a meal you like to have a little bit of everything…a taste of each. Paella is perfect for that…you get delicious bites of savory rice combined with prawns, mussels, clams, squid, chicken and pork, a pepper here and there and of course, gaaaaah-lic.
Paella can be made on the stove top, or on a special serpentine heating device specifically designed for paella, on an open flame (this is the best way guys…on the beach, rocks aligned just so to support the “paellera” (paella pan), with a view of the Gods), or, as I’ve done here, on the grill! Now that summer is upon us, I’m sure you’re all looking for new and exciting things to prepare on your grills…I know I am…Alvaro bought a new, behemoth grill…seriously, it’s like at least 3 times the size of our old one. Which wasn’t small. lmao Needless to say, we’ve been grilling more frequently since this purchase, and I’ve grown tired of steaks and burgers. Paella to the rescue! I’d love to hear your grill suggestions, guys….I really need new ideas. What’s your favorite thing to make on the grill?
Here’s what you’ll need (approximately):
1 paellera (or other wide, flat grillproof dish–mine is 34cm)
good olive oil
4-5 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, minced
1 pepper, minced
a few thyme sprigs
1 bay leaf
1 small spoonful of Spanish paprika (sweet or smokey, your choice)
6-8 chicken wing drumettes
1/2 pound lean pork, in bite sized pieces
a generous pour of white wine (dry, table wine)
2 packets saffron threads (about 15 threads or so?)
2 cups arborio or other short grained, rounded rice
4 cups chicken broth
sea salt to taste
1 small to medium sized squid, cleaned and cut into rings–don’t you dare throw away those tentacles. I might have to come after you
1 pound clams, soaked in saltwater overnight to remove grit
5-6 mussels, soaked to remove grit, beards removed
1 pound prawns, thoroughly washed
1/3 cup frozen peas
Ya got all that? Whew! lol
First, you’ll need to season your paella pan. I like to buy the regular old metal kind. This means that they need to be seasoned first, much like a cast iron pan or wok. To season it, just lightly oil it, and rub it with a paper towel until mostly absorbed. There should be a thin layer of oil remaining on the surface, but just barely. You’ll need to repeat this after washing, so that your paella pan doesn’t rust.
Ok. Are we seasoned? Good. Let’s get cooking!
Drizzle your paellera with some extra virgin olive oil.
Toss the garlic in first, to lightly brown.
Once the garlic is nice and golden, add in the onion, pepper, thyme and bay.
Give it all a good stir, and keep at it until the vegetables are tender.
Add in the paprika and stir again.
Now push the vegetables to one side, and add in the chicken and pork.
You might want to lightly oil the paellera on that side again first.
Season with salt and pepper and brown.
When the meat is nice and browned, add in the wine. I can’t tell you exactly how much…just enough to coat the bottom…probably a good cup to 2 cups?
Add in the saffron and stir around.
Reduce this a bit.
Now add the rice and give it a good stir. Really good, because pretty soon I am going to take the spoon away from you. No, I’m not kidding. lmfao
Add the broth.
Arrange your chicken wings now, because you need to retire your spoon until the cooking has finished. I’m serious, now. Resist all urges to stir your paella. It’s imperative for the delicious crust or “costra.”
NO MORE STIRRING!
I MEAN IT! lmao
After about, oh, 10 minutes your paella should be bubbly and goooood looking, like this:
Now it’s time to arrange the seafood on top.
Just put it on there how you want to…I had some leftover prawns, so I threw them on the grill along side the paella for some impromptu pepper shrimp.
When your paella is just about done, throw on a generous handfull of frozen peas.
Let it cook until done (you’re allowed to poke a fork in there and check lol)
Once your paella is done, you’ll need to check to be sure there aren’t any unopened clams or mussels. Unopened clams/mussels = very, very bad. Throw them out.
Now it’s time to serve! Just pile a bunch on your plate and serve with a wedge of lemon and a nice hunk of bread.
BTW…that black stuff at the right? The “costra.” Ideally it should be brown, not black, but I overcooked. Ooops!
Ps…after you’ve washed your paella pan, you’ll need to season it again to prevent rusting.
Are you guys as addicted to cooking magazines as I am? I mean, the first thing I do every Monday before I pick up the groceries, is pop into the news stand to see if there are any new food mags to be purchased. If there are, it may alter the grocery list, depending on what’s inside. I can’t get a lot of the ones from the States (or any, for that matter, lmfao), but there is quite a variety here as well. One of the newer mags that has caught my eye is called, “Cocina Viva, el Arte de Comer,” (which means, “Living Kitchen, the Art of Eating”). This is a great magazine because it provides a variety of different types of recipes in every issue. There are sections for entertaining, for cooking on a budget, for kids and seasonal dishes. You can see why I can’t leave this one on the shelf, right? The recipe I’m posting today is based on a recipe I found in the latest issue. And guess what? It’s ready in 20 minutes. 20 minutes! I would totally serve this dish for guests…it’s elegant and rich, yet affordable and quick. I served this with fries and a Ceasar Salad (to be posted soon), and almost lost any semblance of charm and grace (that I may or may not have had) whilst trying to mop up every last bit of that sauce. The meat is *super* tender, and just combines so extremely well with the sauce. I hope you like this one as much as we did…even the kids went in for seconds! Including the picky pants “I don’t liiiiiiiike meat” kids.
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 pork tenderloins
sea salt and pepper to taste
2 cups heavy cream (to skinny it up a bit, use half and half or milk)
1 chicken boullion cube
garlic powder to taste
salt to taste
white pepper to taste
1/2 pound (200 grams) grana padano cheese (half in very thin slices, half grated)
Heat oil over medium high heat.
Season tenderloins with salt and black pepper.
Sear tenderloins on all sides, then reduce heat and cover.
Cook tenderloins to desired doneness.
Meanwhile, prepare sauce.
Heat cream over medium heat.
Dissolve the boullion cube in the cream, then season with garlic powder, salt and white pepper.
When the sauce is nearing a boil, add the grated cheese, stirring constantly until melted, and sauce thickens.
If you like the sauce a bit thicker, add a bit of water mixed with cornstarch to thicken a little more.
Pour a little bit of the sauce onto the serving plate.
Slice each tenderloin into medallions and place on top of sauce.
Place a slice of cheese in between each medallion of tenderloin.
Solomillo de Cerdo en Salsa de Grana Padano en Español:
2 cucharadas aceite de oliva
6 solomillos de cerdo (un kilo y medio en total)
sal y pimienta al gusto
2 vasos nata (para hacerlo con menos calorias, sustituir leche o una mezcla de leche y nata)
1 dadito de AveCrem
ajo en polvo al gusto
sal y pimienta blanca al gusto
200 grams queso grana padano (la mitad en lasquitas finas, la mitad rallado)
Calentar el aceite sobre fuego medio fuerte.
Sazonar los solomillos con la sal y la pimienta.
Dorar los solomillos por cada lado, y a continuación, bajar el fuego y tapar.
Cocinar hasta que estén hechos al gusto.
Mientras tanto, preparar la salsa.
Calentar nata a fuego medio.
Disolver el AveCrem en la nata, y a continuación sazonar con el ajo en polvo, sal y pimienta blanca.
Cuanda la salsa se acera a hervir, añadir el queso rallado, removiendo constantemente hasta que se derrite, y la salsa se espese.
Si te gusta la salsa un poco mas espesa, añadir un poquito de agua mezclada con maicena para espesarla un poco.
Verter un poco de la salsa sobre un plato de servir.
Cortar los solomillos en rodajas, y colocar las rodajas sobre la salsa, poniendo una lasca de queso entre cada medallón de carne.
Doing my morning blog rounds I was over at Peter’s site (Kalofagas) longingly looking at his Eggs Benedict recipe (by the way, go and check that out you guys…it is seriously killing me I want it so badly), and realized there was a post just below that one that I hadn’t seen! WHAT? He had posted a delicious Chinese Take-out menu, and mentioned that it was part of a round up to be found at Mochachocolatarita’s Website. I am SO glad he posted that, because her website is fantastic! It’s so cool how we bloggers network and find each other through others’ blog posts. I had never seen Mochachocolatarita’s site before. That is a sin right there…her site is awesome. No, more like AWESOME! And Right now she’s hosting an event celebrating her 88th post, called, “Chinese Take-Out Party,” where each entrant submits their take on Chinese take-out.
I think that this might be sheer luck on my part, because I had planned to post this anyway, but to come in just under the wire like this and be able to participate in a fun event? Even better!
This recipe was something I came up with after having taken out a loin roast, and began wondering what to do with it. The weather has been pretty warm, so regular roast with mashed potatoes didn’t really seem to fit the bill. Avocados are currently at over 11 euros a kilo (that’s like $8-9 a pound), so Tex-Mex was out (you know it’s illegal to eat Tex-Mex without guacamole, don’t you? )…what to do? Hmmm. Why not go Asian with it? Yes! That was the answer I was looking for.
2 pounds (1 kilo) pork loin roast
1 cup mango juice
1/2 cup sweet soy sauce
1/4 cup regular soy sauce
2-3 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons grated ginger
2 tablespoons grated garlic
4 spring onions, white bulbs only (we’ll use the greens later)
pepper to taste
Whisk together all marinade ingredients in a roaster with a lid.
Coat loin roast completely and allow to marinate for a couple of hours in the fridge, turning occasionally.
Heat oven to 375ºF/160ºC.
Roast loin (covered) for about 4 hours.
Shred meat and toss with the juices/sauce that became of the marinade while roasting.
For the Sesame Slaw:
1/2 head cabbage, thinly sliced
1/2 cup chopped green onion (the ones we used the white parts from before)
1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds
1/4 cup sweet soy sauce
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
pepper to taste
Toss all ingredients together.
Yep, that’s it. lol
To make the wraps, you’ll need:
12 flour tortillas
3 cups steamed rice
1 recipe of sesame slaw (posted above)
fresh vegetables and herbs to garnish…I used italian pepper, spring onion, fresh cayennes, cucumber and cilantro
Fill each wrap with some rice, pork, slaw and vegetables.
Slap some hot sauce on that sucker, too.
Have lots of napkins handy, this is better to be eaten with your hands.
Now, onto the dumplings.
I have posted this recipe before, so I will direct you to this post for the ingredients and instructions on how to form the dumplings. However, I have prepared them a little differently today, and changed up the sauce just a little.
To make the sauce:
1/2 cup sweet soy sauce
2 tablespoons regular soy sauce
1/4 cup rice vinegar
**just whisk all this together and your sauce is ready. Garnish with green onion if you like
Preparation of dumplings:
Heat a couple of tablespoons of oil in a saute pan.
Saute raw dumplings until golden on the bottom, then add enough water to come about halfway up the dumplings.
Cover and steam for about 10 minutes, or until cooked through.
Serve with sauce.
Y en español (*nota* 1 vaso = 1 vaso de nocilla):
1 kilo cinta de cerdo en una pieza
1 vaso zumo de mango
1/2 vaso salsa de soja dulce
1/4 vaso salsa de soja normal
2-3 cucharadas vinagre de arroz
1/4 vaso salsa hoisin
1/4 vaso miel
2 cucharadas de jengibre recién rallado
2 cucharadas de ajo rallado
4 cebolletas, solo la parte blanca (la parte verde se utiliza después)
pimienta negra al gusto
Mezclar todos los ingredientes excepto la carne en un recipiente de horno con tapa.
Cubrir la carne con la salsa y dejar macerar en la nevera durante unas horas.
Calentar el horno a 375ºF/160ºC.
Hornear la carne (tapada) durante unas 4 horas.
Desmenuzar la carne y mezclar con la salsa que se ha formado.
Para la Ensalada de Sésamo:
1/2 col rallada
1/2 vaso cebolleta (la parte verde que reservamos antes)
1/4 vaso semillas de sésamo tostadas
1/4 vaso salsa de soja dulce
3 cucharadas de vinagre de arroz
pimienta al gusto
Sí. Solo eso. jiji
Para hacer los “wraps” necesitarás:
12 tortillas de harina (obleas)
3 vasos arroz cocinado al vapor
1 receta de la ensalada de sésamo
verduritas y hierbas para adornar…Yo le puse pimienta italiana, cebolleta, pepino, guindilla fresca y cilantro
Rellenar cada “wrap” con arroz, cerdo, ensalada y verduritas/hierbas.
Ponerle algo de picante también.
Tener muchas servietas a mano, porque esto se come con las manos.
Ahora las empanadillas.
Ya he puesto esta receta antes, así que les dirijo a este post para los ingredientes e instrucciones para formar las empanadillas. Sin embargo, las he preparado un poquillo diferente hoy, y he hecho una salsa distinta.
Para hacer la salsa:
1/2 vaso salsa de soja dulce
2 cucharadas de salsa de soja normal
1/4 vinagre de arroz
**Mezclar todo esto y la salsa está lista. Adornar con cebolleta si te parece.
Elaboración de las empanadillas:
Calentar un poquito de aceite en una sartén.
Freirlas hasta que estén doraditas, y a continuación añadir agua suficiente para llegar a la mitad de las empanadillas.
Tapar y dejar cocinar durante unos 10 minutos o hasta que estén cocinadas.
Servir con la salsa.
So, remember I was telling you about all the grilling we’ve been doing? Often times, the leftover grilled meats and vegetables are less than appealing, am I right? I mean, who wants to eat a cold chorizo? Chorizo is one of the best things EVAH just off the coals, but later? Not so great. They tend to be dry when reheated, and generally not the most appetizing of foods. Other ingredients are easier to find uses for, like roasted peppers and baked potatoes for example. Potato salad, anyone? But, I was feeling guilty about tossing all of those lovely chorizos after our barbecues…there must be *some* way to salvage them? Well, there is. And it’s delicious! And they are revived to their delectable juicy selves. Awesome! Just look at these tasty little bites of goodness:
There are many names for this particular style of egg dish. Here in Spain, we call it a “tortilla,” whereas in Italy, it’s called, “frittata,” and in the States it’s generally referred to as an omelette (depending on your heritage, that is. lol). The funny thing is that tortillas are made with eggs, but it’s really about the ingredients you add to them. Traditional Spanish tortillas are all about the potatoes. This one includes the conventional potatoes, but also includes delicious toasted garlic, onion, roasted red peppers and grilled chorizo to make for a mighty tasty, wonderfully easy meal.
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 large Spanish onion, minced
3 baked potatoes, skin removed and roughly chopped
3 chorizos, grilled and chopped
1 roasted red bell pepper, chopped
8 eggs, beaten
salt and pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil in a medium sized, deeper saute pan.
Saute garlic until golden, then add onions and continue to saute until translucent.
Add potatoes, chorizos and peppers and heat through.
*note* if you don’t have leftovers, I suggest baking the potatoes in the microwave or oven until done, and cooled, using canned roasted peppers, and for the chorizo, just saute it until cooked through before adding the potatoes and peppers)
Meanwhile, beat eggs with salt and pepper until beginning to froth.
Reduce heat to low, and pour eggs over meat and vegetables.
Stir around a bit, to permit egg to solidify slightly, then cover.
Using a spatula, press egg toward center occasionally, to form the rounded edge.
After about 10 minutes, when egg is beginning to set, carefully place a large plate over the saute pan (one that larger than the pan).
This is the tricky part.
I usually count to three and flip the tortilla onto the plate.
Please be careful not to burn yourself! It’s also important to make sure the egg is beginning to set before doing this, or you’ll have egg all over the place. Ask me how I know this. LOL
Wipe out saute pan, and add a bit more olive oil.
Slide the tortilla back into the pan and cover.
Repeat the pressing of the sides occasionally, and when the egg is really looking like it’s set, sort of “shake” the tortilla around in the pan a bit to prevent sticking.
This should take about 10-20 more minutes, depending on the size of your pan.
Repeat the “flip” process (I find that it looks prettier when you flip a second time).
To see what a finished tortilla should look like, have a look HERE.
Serve as desired. Here I’ve cut the tortilla into cubes to serve as tapas.