I am sharing this recipe because of my love for the Mountain Rose apple. Every year I buy a big box and look for new ways to enjoy. I remembered a dish I would periodically make featuring apples. It originated from one of my favorite Spanish inspired cookbooks is Jose Andres’ “Tapas – A taste of Spain in America”. Chef Andres is a protege of the great Ferran Adria of El Bulli fame. This book is a great starter book for exploring simple chef driven tapas. One of my favorite dishes is the seemingly strange combination of raw salmon and apples in his Asturian style salmon recipe. Asturias is a beautiful region who’s food basket is filled with salmon from the Sella river, Cabrales bleu cheese and apples. Chef Andres describes the dish as not traditional but made with ingredients coming from the region. I decided to take his lead and alter it to fit the incredible bounty of the Pacific Northwest….
I was reading Jose Pizarro’s beautifully photographed book ‘Spanish Flavors’ and started massively craving the robust flavors of a perfectly cooked Spanish meal heady with garlic, smoked paprika and finished with a drizzle of fruity Spanish olive oil. I drooled as I flipped through the pages of food porn imagining myself sitting at a tapas bar sipping on a glass of Cava or perhaps Txacoli with plates of charred octopus and crispy Flamenquin waiting in front of me. Or maybe digging into a real Paella with its socarrat, the crispy, crunchy, caramelized rice stuck to the bottom of a pan that anyone who truly understands the virtues of Paella fights for. Somehow I managed to maintain enough presence of mind to write a list of dishes I wanted to tackle later that night, hopped into our car and headed to the market. I do this all the time, I attempt to have a ‘menu’ prior to shopping and never manage to come home with any of it intact. Every single time I get completely waylaid by the richness and diversity of offerings. I guess I just love food too much to be constrained in that way or maybe it’s just not the way I think. The third more feasible explanation is that my dear mother thought of a wonderful creamy blanquette de veau at the exact moment of my childbirth, forgetting she wasn’t at the table, squeezed a bit too hard, and perhaps cut off air circulation to my brain at a critical moment resulting in a mild form of menu amnesia. Whatever you call it, I have the struggle every single day. …
Fideuà , a rustic Catalan Pasta Paella I like to make with Monkfish, Clams and Shrimp. Is one of those dishes you simply cannot stop eating when you start. Here is a simple recipe best enjoyed with a great bottle of Rioja and a green salad!
Ingredients for four servings:
- ¼ c. Olive Oil
- 1 T. Garlic slivers
- pinch Saffron
- 16 pieces Shrimp, 16/20 size
- 12 ounces Monkfish, cut into four pieces
- 12 each Manila Clams
- 1 pound Fideo Noodles, toasted or Vermicelli broken into small pieces
- 1 c. freshTomatoes, diced
- 1 T. Spanish Paprika
- 2 c. Chicken Stock
- 1 c. Tomato Sauce
- ¼ c. chopped Parsley
- 1 T.Butter
- Chefs Notes:
- Heat olive oil, add garlic and cook till they start to turn brown.
- Add saffron, paprika, seafood, and toasted Fideo noodles.
- Add diced tomatoes, chicken stock and tomato sauce.
- Cook till pasta is done, about five to ten minutes.
- Finish with a little butter, chopped parsley and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
- Stir a big spoonful of Aioli into cooked pasta and garnish with yet another heaping spoonful!