Back in 2008, Mario Batali and Gwyneth Paltrow hit the road to tour the foods of Spain for a PBS television series (program website is here). And U.S.-to-Europe airlines had their in-flight video content set for ages to come. Mark Bittman and preternaturally beautiful actress Claudia Bassols were the other half of the team. I don’t know how Mario Batali rallied folks to this plan, but presumably it was on the promise that everyone else might live vicariously through him. I support that.
Hel’s Kitchen is doing its own tour of Spain – for two weeks because they are both short weeks. We will be closed this Thursday (September 3rd) and for Labor Day (September 7th).
Notes on this week’s menu.
Caldo Gallego Soup with dark greens and sausage, comes with fresh baked roll & almond butter. According to Spanish cookbook author Penelope Casas, Spanish soups are traditionally hearty and meant to be a meal, and rarely tempered by cream or butter. Hence, no cream of spinach soup, but a soup of sharp greens and meat.
- Fabada Like the Spanish answer to our baked beans. Comes with fresh baked roll & almond butter. This dish came about because last week the fresh fava bean and mussels dish, supplemented by dried favas, raised the inevitable question of what dried fava beans are normally used for. Fabada is the answer. This dish contains pork in both braised and bacon forms.
- Homemade Crackers & Spreads Beet & walnut spread, mushroom & blue cheese spread. A vegetarian and gluten free item – substitute these crackers for the rolls in the above dishes to make them gluten free.
- Tortilla Roll Spanish tortilla (potato and egg), on soft roll with mayonnaise. Hearty yet small. I’m also going to admit that it’s based on an airport snack I had once. It was great with a beer. Reheating Notes: The tortilla should be heated separately, a quick trip to the oven, an oiled skillet, the microwave followed by the skillet would all work.
- Salad with Tuna & Green Olive Dressing A combination of bitter and mild greens, with tuna, capers, tomatoes, and roasted red peppers along with the olives.
- Salad Dressings Smoky Paprika & Honey; Miso Vinaigrette; Creamy Garlic. Try out a new dressing on the lettuce, or any other vegetables, you have on hand.