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Cooking with "Tapas" by Jose Andres


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Most excellent, Bill. How did you like the chocolate-bread-olive oil dessert? What kind of chocolate did you use?

I love the frisee salad idea.

The Chocolate bread was interesting - I think I over toasted the bread just a bit. I went really light on the oil on my first piece, but the next two I had I poured a pretty generous drizzle and I liked that better. I think the chocolate brings out the fruitiness of the oil a bit. And I've become a big fan of fleur de sel on sweets lately.

We used 2 chocolates - Scharffenberger milk chocolate and semisweet. I couldn't find any Spanish chocolate at Balduccis this weekend. Both jenrus and I typically like milk chocolate better but in this she preferred the semisweet and I liked the milk chocolate better.

Bill Russell

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One other thing I forgot to add - I used the called for 4 ozs of potato chips and seven large size eggs and the tortilla ended up more "egg-y" than I had anticipated and than other tortillas I've made in the past.

Anyone else have that problem or should it actually be more egg than potato? Should I have used samller eggs? Chef Andres?

Bill Russell

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I'm just now picking up this thread, and the food looks great.  As Jose Andres and Spanish cuisine become a bigger influence to American cooks, myself included, I love to see this type of food.

Is this book worth purchasing, is it valuable?

I think the book is certainly worth purchasing - I think this thread is a testament to that. As for being valuable, I'm not sure what you are asking.

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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I suppose I was inquiring if people repeatedly find themselves cooking from this book and if there are key concepts that can be carried into one's personal style of cooking.

It seems that this is the case, but I'd love to hear from people who cook often from the book.

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I suppose I was inquiring if people repeatedly find themselves cooking from this book and if there are key concepts that can be carried into one's personal style of cooking.

It seems that this is the case, but I'd love to hear from people who cook often from the book.

I think it is a book that certainly can be valuable to anyone with a penchant for this style of food. I don't often cook from cookbooks, but have enjoyed cooking from this one. With what I can gather from observing your culinary interests, I would expect this book to have some value to you if you like cookbooks.

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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I don't own any other tapas or Spanish cookbooks. I've found this one to be valuable for both its overview of classic Spanish tapas and their key ingredients. But the exciting thing about this book is the funkier recipes--it's encouraging me to move my Spanish food beyond my classic tapas favorites like garlic shrimp, asparagus and Romesco sauce and tortilla Espanola. Take a look at Bilrus's gazpacho above for a hint of what I'm talking about--Chef Jose is a master at turning a Ye Olde Spanish dish like that into something unique and refreshing.

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The cooking continues :

Rioja Style Potatoes - I have only made this once, but next time I would reduce the amount of water I put into this dish and only cover say 2/3 of the potatoes and chorizo. Also, at the risk of further tinkering with a classic, I would remove the chorizo once browned, cook the potatoes and then return the chorizo for that crispy texture I love.

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Wine - 1996 Campillo Rioja Reserva

Flan - This has got to be one of the easiest and best Flan recipes. I did reduce the oven temp to 250F and baked the Flan for 60 min. Also put it through a chinois while filling the ramekins. Used maple syrus instead of caramel.

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There are thousands, possibly millions of Spanish immigrants here in Venezuela. A "Tasca" is the common local bar, so when you go into one and sit down, you get tapas. They can come in all shapes and forms. Maybe a little "Pulpo al Gallego" - marinated octopus; maybe some " Pimientos de Padrón" - tiny, jalapeño sized peppers cooked gently in olive oil with salt added - and 1 out of 20 is "picante" - spicy! Maybe "Camarones al ajillo", maybe "Champiñones al ajillo", maybe a little cup of spicy broth made with stewed tripe ( called " Mondongo" here); maybe some thinly sliced Beef Tongue in escabeche.

Even the simplest ideas are wonderful. Tonight some friends appeared unexpectedly and I made "Banderillas" - a square of fried bread, a slice of Chorizo Vela, a sundried tomato, a pitted green olive with a caperberry inside, all served on a cocktail stick.

Never underestimate the simplicity of Tapas.

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Even barkrus the dog enjoyed a bite of the beef with his kibble:

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when I first saw this pic I didn't read the caption and was like that looks like steak on kibble, how gross. HA!

in other news...

Your dog eats better then I do

Scooby Doo can doo doo, but Jimmy Carter is smarter
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I think that your skillset, cuisine and knowledge-base will grow exponentially with that purchase, Bryan. Your food will match perfectly with this book. I can't wait to start witnessing some of the fruits of your reading.

I'm sure you've at least thumbed through it by now -- aren't you inspired beyond belief?

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Indeed, there is a lot of nice stuff in here. I enjoy how in many dishes he takes a very rustic, traditional dish and really makes it into something unique. I hope I can start doing this, too.

I'm having a small Spanish-Cuban-themed dinner party in a couple days and will try do some things inspired by this book. Currently I'm playing with the idea of a haute version of Jose Andres' romesco that will look elegant and smooth on the plate to go with a vaca frita-style beef dish.

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I was very pleased with how the recipes and ideas in this book played out in an initial run through.

Results can be seen here.

Jose Andres-inspired dinner party.

Nice. What kind of chocolate did you use in your dessert? Wines or other beverages?

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Nice. What kind of chocolate did you use in your dessert? Wines or other beverages?

Scharfenberger semi-sweet in both the ice cream and on the toast. It's good stuff.

I made a couple batches of Sangria with some '03 California (Alexander Valley and Napa Valley) Cab Sauvs. From what I've heard (and personal experience backs this up) the really hot weather that year made for a collection of very fruit forward wines. So even though they were made from a "heavy" grape, the wine worked well with the sangria. We also drank a lot of beer, naturally.

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Nice Dinner Bryan (and good luck in school) !!!

Yesterday's breakfast:

"Hot spring Egg" with White Asparagus

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I made the eggs in a water bath @65C for 1 hr. I found this dish to be a bit bland, so I added a bit of aioli which went well with the asparagus.

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Percy, Is the aioli is mashed with an asparagus in front of the egg in the second photo?

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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When I tried to make some aiolli it turned out unpleasantly bitter; I think due to the garlic. I had to take what I made and mix that into "plain" fresh mayonnaise to make it taste good.

Could this be because I was using old garlic? I can't think of anything else that might do it. Has anyone else had this experience.

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When I tried to make some aiolli it turned out unpleasantly bitter; I think due to the garlic.  I had to take what I made and mix that into "plain" fresh mayonnaise to make it taste good.

Could this be because I was using old garlic?  I can't think of anything else that might do it.  Has anyone else had this experience.

Yes! If you taste it right away it is AWFUL - it needs an hour or more to mellow out. That has been my experience.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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