Traditional Spanish Tapas

TRADITIONAL SPANISH TAPAS

Empanada

  • Aceitunasolives, sometimes with a filling of anchoviesor red bell pepper
  • Albóndigasmeatballswith sauce
  • Allioli: “garlicand oil” the classic ingredients are only garlic, oil and salt, but the most common form of it includes mayonnaise and garlic, served on bread or with boiled or grilled potatoes, fish, meat or vegetables.
  • Bacalao: salted codloin sliced very thinly, usually served with bread and tomatoes
  • Banderillas, or pinchos de encurtidos, are cold tapas made from small food items pickled in vinegar and skewered together. Also known as gildas or piparras and consist of pickled items, like olives, baby onions, baby cucumbers, chiles (guindilla) with pieces of pepper and other vegetables.
  • Boquerones: white anchoviesserved in vinegar (boquerones en vinagre) or deep fried
  • Calamaresor rabas: rings of battered squid
  • Carne mechada: slow-cooked, tender beef
  • Chopitos: battered and fried tiny squid, also known as puntillitas
  • Chorizo al vino: chorizo sausage slowly cooked in wine
  • Chorizo a la sidra: chorizo sausage slowly cooked in cider
  • Croquetas: a common sight in bars and homes, béchamel with chopped ham, boiled egg, or whatever filings, coated in egg and grated bread and fried
  • Empanadillas: large or small turnovers filled with meats and vegetables
  • Ensaladilla rusa: (Olivier salad), potato salad made with mixed boiled vegetables with tuna, olives and mayonnaise
  • Gambasprawnssauteed in salsa negra (peppercorn sauce), al ajillo (with garlic), or pil-pil (with chopped chili peppers) or just grilled.
  • Mejillones rellenos: stuffed mussels, called tigres(“tigers”) in Navarre because of the spicy taste
  • Papas arrugadasor papas con mojo (see Canarian wrinkly potatoes) (Canary Islands): very small, new potatoes boiled in salt water, then drained, slightly roasted and served with mojo, a garlic, Spanish paprika, red pepper, cumin seed, olive oil, wine vinegar, salt and bread miga (fresh bread crumbs without the crust)
  • Patatas bravasor papas bravas: fried potato dices (sometimes parboiled and then fried, or simply boiled) served with salsa brava a spicy tomato sauce, also served with mayo or aioli
  • Pimientos de Padrón: small green peppers originally from Padrón (a municipality in the province of A CoruñaGalicia) that are fried in olive oil or served raw, most are mild, but a few in each batch are quite spicy.
  • Pulpo a la gallega(Galician-style octopus) or polbo á feira  cooked in boiling water and served hot in olive oil. Seasoned with paprika, for its recognizable red color + sea salt for texture and flavor.
  • Pincho moruno(Moorish spike): a stick with spicy meat, made of pork, lamb or chicken
  • Queso con anchoasCastillaor Manchego cured cheese with anchovies on top
  • Raxoporkseasoned with garlic and parsley, with added paprika, called zorza
  • Setas al Ajillo: fresh mushrooms sauteed with olive oil and garlic.
  • Solomillo a la castellana: fried pork scallops, served with an onion and/or Cabrales cheesesauce
  • Solomillo alwhisky: fried pork scallops, marinated with whiskybrandy or white wine and olive oil
  • Tortilla de patatas(Spanish omelette) or tortilla española: a type of omelet containing fried chunks of potatoes and sometimes onion
  • Tortilla paisana: a tortilla containing vegetables and chorizo (similar to frittata)
  • Tortillitas de camarones(Andalusia): battered prawn fritters
  • Zamburiñas: renowned Galician scallops(Chlamys varia), often served in a marinera, tomato-based sauce

Allioli Recipe

Recipe by Chef Jesus Bonilla

Photo from Tastespotting

Allioli (pronounced: [ˌaʎiˈɔɫi], also spelled alioli [ˌaɫiˈɔɫi]), from all i oli, Catalan for “garlic and oil”, is a typical paste-like cold sauce of Catalonia, Balearic Islands and Valencia. It is made by pounding garlic with olive oil and salt in a mortar until smooth. It is often served with arròs a banda from Alicante, with grilled lamb, grilled vegetables and arròs negre, and comes in other varieties such as allioli de codony (allioli with boiled quince, not the preserve) or allioli with boiled pear.

1 SMALL EGG

1 CUP EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL

1 GARLIC CLOVE, PEELED

1 TEASPOON SHERRY VINEGAR OR FRESH LEMON JUICE

SALT TO TASTE

Break the egg into a small mixing bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, the garlic clove, and the vinegar or lemon juice. Using a hand – held electric mixer, mix at high speed until the garlic is fully pureed into a loose paste. Then little by little add the remaining olive oil as you continue blending at high speed. If the mixture appears too thick when you begin adding the oil, add 1 teaspoon water to loosen the sauce. Continue adding the oil and blending until you have a rich, creamy allioli. The sauce will be a lovely yellow color. Add salt to taste.

Avocado Gazpacho Recipe

Avocado Gazpacho

Photo by Crystal Johnson Avocado Gazpacho displayed by Tender Greens Restaurant at Los Angeles Times the Taste

While attending the Los Angeles Times Taste event, I was in an unusual predicament.  I was on a soft food diet after dental surgery.  The fortunate thing for me was the love chefs have for making purees and soup.  I stumbled up a delicious gazpacho made with Avocado.  So I decided this would be a useful and healthy recipe for me.  Ironically, I have never found a store bought gazpacho that I like.  I have only enjoyed freshly made.  I found this recipe for Avocado Gazpacho on Cooking Stoned Website:

INGREDIENTS

  • 5 cups ripe green heirloom tomatoes, cubed
  • 2 avocados
  • 1 lime
  • ¼ cup basil
  • ¼ cup cilantro
  • 5 tarragon leaves
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 Serrano pepper
  • Salt to taste

See Directions

White Hot Chocolate Recipe

Warm Beverages are among the most comforting aspects of winter.   Hot Chocolate in particular becomes more popular during this season.   Escape the routine and try this Splenda version of White Hot Chocolate.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (500 mL) fat-free half and half
  •  2 cups (500 mL) fat-free milk
  • 3/4 cup (175 mL) NESTLE® TOLL HOUSE® Premier
  •  2 cups (500 mL) fat-free half and half
  •  2 cups (500 mL) fat-free milk
  • 3/4 cup (175 mL) NESTLE® TOLL HOUSE® Premier white morsels
  • 1/4 cup (50 mL) SPLENDA® No calorie Sweetener, Granulated
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract
  •  Garnish: fat-free frozen whipped topping

Preparation: Bring half and half and milk to a boil over medium-high heat; add white chocolate morsels and SPLENDA® Granulated, stirring until morsels melt. Stir in vanilla. Garnish, if desired. Serve immediately.

Multi Cultural stories of Hot Chocolate

In mainland Europe (and particularly Spain and Italy), hot chocolate is sometimes served very thick due to the use of a thickening agent such as corn starch. Among the multiple thick forms of hot chocolate served in Europe is the Italiancioccolata densa. German variations are also known for being very thick and heavy. Hot chocolate and churros is the traditional working-man’s breakfast in Spain. This style of hot chocolate can be extremely thick, often having the consistency of warm chocolate pudding.   In the Netherlands, hot chocolate is a very popular drink, known as chocolademelk, often served at home or at the cafes. In France, hot chocolate is often served at breakfast time, and sometimes sliced French bread or croissants, spread with butter, jam, honey or Nutella are dunked into the hot chocolate; there are also brands of hot chocolate specially formulated for breakfast time, notably Banania.

Comida China: Morisqueta Tostada History & Recipe

Comida China

This dish is typical of what is known in the Philippines as Comida China: Chinese dishes with Spanish names. Both the Spaniards and the Chinese were a very strong presence in the Philippines during the colonial days from the 16th to the early 20th century. When the Chinese opened the first restaurants knows as panciterias, Spanish was the language of commerce, hence the dishes acquired Spanish names.-(Filipinoheritage.com)

 

See Recipe: http://www.likhapinoy.com/filipinoheritage/food/recipes/rice_morisqueta.asp


Variants in Spanish Food Vocabulary

You know when you are traveling abroad, feeling all confident after taking all those lessons and studying all those flashcards, and you walk into a little cafe or restaurant, ask for some peach juice, and the waiter just stares at you? You know you formed your question correctly, you studied so hard and even consulted the phrase book before asking! Well, did you ask for “zumo de melocotón” or “jugo de durazno”? It makes all the difference.

Depending on where you are, Spanish food vocabulary can be completely different from what you may have learned. And while this may be frustrating at times, it is also one of the greatest things about Spanish and it’s ability to adapt and evolve with the people who are speaking it. I mean, think about all the different ways English-speakers have come up with to say bathroom: toilet, water closet, loo, restroom, etc. So I say take this chance to learn a few extra words that all mean the exact same thing! That way when you are traveling in Argentina, you won’t get that disappointed look from that cute waiter or waitress. Take a look at a few more examples I found below and study hard!

Popcorn: palomitas (Mexico, Spain), cabritas (Chile), crispeta (Colombia), pochoclo (Argentina, Uruguay), cotufas (Venezuela), rositas (Cuba), popororo (Guatemala)

Catfish: siluro (Spain), bagre (Latin America)

Tortilla: tortilla (Mexico and central America), omelete-like egg dish (Spain)

Strawberry: frutilla (Argentina), fresa (Spain, Latin America, South America)

Avocado: palta (Bolivia, Peru, Southern Cone*), aguacate (Spain, Latin America, Northern South America)

Sweetcorn: maíz (understood everywhere), tierno, elote (Mexico), choclo (South America), jojoto (Venezuela)

Bean: poroto (Argentina), alubia, judía (Southern Cone*), frijol (Spain), caraota (Venezuela)

Pepper: pimiento (Spain), ají (Argentina, Uruguay, Peru), pimentón (South America), chile (Mexico)Variants in Spanish Food Vocabulary

For About Spanish Language Visit: http://www.spanishdict.com/blog

A Brief History of Haitian Cuisine-A True Multi-cultural Experience (by Monica Johnson)

Freshly caught fish served on a leaf.

Freshly caught fish served on a leaf.

Looking for African influences in the Caribbean? Look no further than Haiti, where most of the population is of African descent. When the first Europeans came to settle in the land of the Arawak and Taino Indians, they brought oranges, limes, mangoes, rice, and sugar cane with them, but that’s not all they brought. They also brought African slaves and left them to work the sugar cane plantations.

“How did this come about?” you may ask. Well if you recall there was a man named Christopher Columbus who had a little something to do with the history of the Americas. Remember how Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492, well guess where else he landed? Quite the busy little beaver, the explorer discovered the already inhabited land and claimed it for Spain. Spain called it Santo Domingo, but Columbus named it La Isla Espanola (The Spanish Island later to be called Hispaniola).  By the year 1520, the native Indians were almost completely wiped out from the hard slave labor the Spanish imposed  upon them and the revolts of the people leading to executions by the Spaniards. Sadly the Taino’s have no tangible legacy in the form of an existing people in Haiti; therefore, Africans were shipped over to the island to work on the sugar cane plantations.

The Africans introduced okra, ackee (red and yellow fruit), pigeon peas, taro (edible root with a nutty flavor). By the year 1700, the French had taken control of Hispaniola and with the African slave labor still in place, they expanded their commerce to include coffee, cotton, and cocoa. Haiti went on to win their own independence in 1804 becoming the first African-American led republic in the New World.

Haiti, originally  named by Taino Indians for its high ground, shares  Hispaniola with their spanish-speaking neighbor, the Dominican Republic. Occupying just the western third part of the island, Haiti still remains highly influenced by the French in its language, culture, and food. French cheeses, breads, and desserts have been integrated into the Haitian lifestyle. Haiti’s cuisine is often considered French or Creole; however the Spanish, African, and French influence make for a smorgasbord of flavor and a truly historical and  multi-cultural experience.

The difference between Haitian and other Caribbean cuisine in a word: Peppery

Method of cooking: Often slow coked and wrapped in banana or plantains and leaves for several hours. An African method of cooking is still employed today, using coals and placing them in a hollowed-out area of the ground. The food is then placed atop the coals with the leaves covering it for ultimate slow cooking results.

Try this at home: In the mood for a Haitian creole specialty, click here for a recipe for Haitian griot (fried pork).

Click here to become a fan of the Multi Cultural Cooking Network  on Facebook

The History of Tex Mex

(Wikepedia)

Tex-Mex” is a term used to describe a regional American cuisine that blends food products available in the United States and the culinary tex-mex-chili-piecreations of Mexican-Americans influenced by the cuisines of Mexico. The cuisine has spread from border states such as Texas and those in the Southwestern United States to the rest of the country. In some places, particularly outside of Texas, “Tex-Mex” is used to describe a localized version of Mexican cuisine. It is common for all of these foods to be referred to as “Mexican food” in Texas, parts of the United States, and some other countries. In other ways it is Southern cooking using the commodities from Mexican culture. In many parts of the U.S. outside Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona, the term is synonymous with Southwestern cuisine

Food historians tell us Tex-Mex cuisine originated hundreds of years ago when Spanish/Mexican recipes combined with Anglo fare. “Tex-Mex” first entered the English language as a nickname for the Texas-Mexican Railway, chartered in southern Texas in 1875.[4]

In train schedules published in the newspapers of the 1800s the names of railroads were abbreviated. The Missouri Pacific was called the Mo. Pac. and the Texas-Mexican was abbreviated Tex. Mex. In the 1920s the hyphenated form was used in American newspapers in reference to the railroad and to describe people of Mexican descent who were born in Texas.[5]

In the mission era, Spanish and Mexican Indian foods were combined in Texas as in other parts of the Northern Frontier of New Spain.[6] However, the cuisine that would come to be called Tex-Mex actually originated with Tejanos (Texans of Hispanic descent) as a hybrid of Spanish and native Mexican foods when Texas was part of New Spain and later Mexico.

From the South Texas region between San Antonio and the Rio Grande Valley, this cuisine has had little variation and from earliest times has always been influenced by the cooking in the neighboring northern states of Mexico. The ranching culture of South Texas and northern Mexico straddles both sides of the border. A taste for cabrito (kid goat), barbacoa de cabeza (barbecued cow heads), carne seca (dried beef), and other products of cattle culture is common on both sides of the Rio Grande. In the 20th century Tex-Mex took on such Americanized elements as yellow cheese as goods from the United States became cheap and readily available.

for more info visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tex-Mex

Paella Recipe

i1_Paella582_sINGREDIENTS:

12 small fresh clams in shell
12 medium-sized fresh shrimp in shells
8 oz. chorizo or other garlic-seasoned sausage
2 Tbsp. olive or cooking oil
2 1/2 lb. chicken, cut into 8 serving pieces
2 (15 oz.) cans chicken broth (about 4 c.)
1 medium-sized onion, cut into wedges
1 sweet red or green pepper, cleaned out and cut into strips
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
2 c. white rice, uncooked
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. saffron
1/2 c. fresh peas or 1/2 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen peas

For fresh clams, cover clams in shells with salted
water, using 3 tablespoons salt to 8 cups cold water. Let
stand 15 minutes and rinse. Repeat soaking and rinsing twice.
Set aside. For fresh shrimp, remove shells from shrimps.
Split each shrimp down the back with a small knife and pull out
the black or white vein. Rinse shrimp and dry on a paper
towel. Set aside.
In a paella pan or a very wide skillet, cook sausage 10
minutes or until done. Drain; let cool and slice. Set aside.
Heat oil in the skillet and brown chicken 15 minutes, turning
occasionally. Remove chicken and set aside. In a saucepan,
heat chicken broth to a boil.
Meanwhile, brown onion, red pepper and garlic in oil
remaining in the skillet. Remove oven racks and preheat the
oven to 400 degrees. Add rice, boiling broth, oregano and saffron to
the skillet. Bring to a boil over high heat and then remove.
Arrange chicken, sausage, shrimp and clams on top of the rice.
Scatter peas over all. Set the pan on the oven floor and bake
uncovered for 25 to 30 minutes or until liquid has been ab-
sorbed by rice. NEVER stir paella after it goes into the oven.
Remove paella from the oven and cover with a kitchen towel.
Let rest 5 minutes. Serve at the table directly from the pan.

This and more Spanish recipes found at: http://www.thegutsygourmet.net/sp-paellamadrid

Restaurant Owner Realizes the American Dream

Photo Credit: vrdcimage.restaurant.com

As an entrepeneur, I love this story.  This is much more than a review.  When a person goes from dish washer to owner of two successful Mexican restaurants, it should make us all say, “Si se Puede!”  Find out the story behind Tequila’s restaurants in Van Nuys, CA and Burbank.- Crysal A. Johnson, MCCN Editor

Two of the more popular choices for Mexican food in Los Angeles tends to be El Torito and Acapulco’s; however, Tequila’s owner, Tony Castillo takes a page from these restaurants and opening Tequila’s restaurant in Van Nuys in 2000.  Tequila’s became such as success that he opened another location on Magnolia Blvd in Burbank.  Castillo began as a disher washer working in the Mexican restaurant industry then worked his way up ownership  of two restaurants.  Isn’t that the American dream? Castillo is passionate and proud of the food served in his restaurant.  You may even see the owner serving if he is short staffed.  That seemed to be case when, I went.  The staff is friendly but the service extremely slow.

Read link below for more:

http://www.examiner.com/x-9408-LA-Comfort–Soul-Food-Restaurant-Examiner~y2009m6d28-Tequilas-Restaurant-There-are-More-Reasons-to-Visit-than-Tequila