Monday, May 30, 2011

A trip to Spain - in your mouth!

You know how I love to plan a meal - well this was perfect, if I do say so myself! Richard's dad was visiting so I made us a special Spanish style dinner. It was so nice out we ate the appetizers outside. To start I made the first Padrons of the season - yummy!

Next I served sauteed wild mushrooms (secret to making these special besides the great mushrooms is to add dry sherry at the end) on whole wheat walnut toast with a little chevre - the mushrooms were meaty and the goat cheese gave them a nice sharp bite.

Our main course was Spanish Brisket with carrots and fideo noodles and an amazing salad. For the salad I picked a mix of butter lettuce and romaine from Malin's garden next door then tossed with fresh pitted cherries, slivers of manchego cheese and marcona almonds. Just a simple dressing of sherry wine vinegar with a dash of honey, dijon mustard and a walnut oil and voila! Don't forget lots of fresh ground pepper!

Spanish Brisket serves 4 adapted from Food & Wine

1 tablespoon smoked spanish paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper
3 to 4 pound beef brisket
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion
couple diced garlic cloves
1 cup diced tomatoes
1 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1 bay leaf
pinch of saffron threads (if you don't have, no worries)
3/4 cup dry sherry
handful of green olives
bunch of carrots

Mix spices and spread on beef. In a roasting pan large enough to fit the roast add the oil and brown the meat on both sides. Remove meat to a platter. Add the onions and garlic and saute until soft then add tomatoes, broth, vinegar, bay leaf, saffron and sherry. Return the beef, bring to a boil and then cover with foil and put in a 325 degree oven for about 2 hours. Turn the brisket after an hour and add the olives and carrots. If you can stand to wait a day (it tasted better that way!) then let it cool and put the juices in another bowl. The next day skim off the fat from the sauce and then slice the brisket across the grain and return to the pan with the carrots and sauce and reheat for about 30 min. Serve with Fideo.


1/2 onion thinly sliced
3 tablespoons olive oil (I used the oil that I fried the padrons in!)
8 oz fideo noodles (small spanish or mexican noodles - could use broken spaghettini)
1 and 1/4 cup chicken broth ( I used some tomato water - drained off my canned tomatoes as part of the broth)

Saute the onions in the oil then add the noodles and let brown, stirring often. Add the broth and simmer about 10 min, or til liquid is absorbed, and pasta is tender - adding more liquid if needed. S&P to taste.

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