This is a house specialty of an Andalucían restaurant the late Spanish food authority Penelope Casas used to visit with her husband. It can be served as part of a tapas spread, or when accompanied by side dishes, as a main course. We especially like it with sautéed mushrooms and onions.
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 pound beef tenderloin tips (or steaks), cut into 1-inch pieces
- 8 cloves garlic, peeled and lightly smashed
- Coarse salt (kosher or sea)
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons dry Spanish sherry, such as Fino
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, for serving
Heat the oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the beef and garlic and sauté, stirring frequently with a metal spatula, until the meat is nicely browned and cooked to your liking. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in the sherry, then transfer to an earthenware casserole dish. Return the sauté pan to the heat and deglaze with a few tablespoons of water. Stir the glaze into the meat. Sprinkle with parsley. Serve hot from the casserole dish or a platter.
Serves 6 to 8 as an appetizer; 4 as a main course — Recipe adapted from 1000 Spanish Recipes by Penelope Casas (Houghton Mifin Harcourt, 2014)
Any mild-flavored, firm-textured fish can be served with this garlicky tomato sauce. Keep a close eye on the garlic slices as you brown them.
- 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 heads of garlic plus 4 large cloves, peeled and very thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
- 1 1/2 cups canned crushed tomatoes
- 2 cups water
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- Eight 6-ounce cleaned monkfish fillets, about 2 inches thick
- Chopped fresh parsley, for serving
Preheat the oven to 400°F. In a large skillet, warm 1/4 cup of the olive oil. Add the sliced garlic and cook slowly over very low heat, shaking the skillet, until the garlic is deep golden, 15 minutes. Remove about 1/4 cup of garlic slices to a plate with a slotted spoon and reserve. Add the paprika to the garlic in the skillet and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and cook over moderately high heat for 1 minute. Add the water and simmer until the sauce has reduced to 1 1/2 cups, about 10 to 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
In a very large skillet, heat the 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Season the fish with salt and pepper. Cook over high heat until browned on the bottom, 2 minutes. Turn the fish, transfer to the oven, and roast until just cooked through, 15 minutes.
Transfer the fish to a large, warmed platter. Pour any juices from the skillet into the sauce and simmer for 2 minutes. Spoon the sauce onto plates and set the fish on top. Scatter the fried garlic over the fish. Top with parsley and serve right away.
Serves 8 — Recipe adapted from Food and Wine, October 2005
Rich and creamy with a puddle of olive oil on top, these mashed potatoes make a perfect accompaniment to roast chicken. Use a ricer for the fluffiest texture.
- 2 pounds of good mashing potatoes, such as Yukon gold, peeled and cut in half
- Coarse salt (kosher or sea)
- 6 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 cup grated Manchego cheese, preferably aged
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives (optional)
Add the potatoes to a large pot of salted water. Bring to a boil and then simmer until fork-tender, about 20 minutes. Drain, then return the potatoes to the pot; dry over low heat. Mash with a potato masher, or pass through a ricer.
In the meantime, heat the cream, milk, butter, salt, and olive oil in a small saucepan until warm. Gradually add the cream mixture to the potatoes, stirring or mashing to incorporate. Fold in the cheese. Taste, adding more salt if desired. Drizzle with additional olive oil. Top with chives, if desired.
Serves 4 to 6 — Recipe adapted from spanishsabores.com
Spanish Marcona almonds, once obscure in the US, are now widely available. They are usually roasted in olive oil, then salted. If you cannot find them, substitute regular toasted almonds or hazelnuts.
- 1 1/2 pounds pencil-thin asparagus, trimmed
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup chopped roasted, salted Marcona almonds
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, plus lemon wedges, for serving
- 1 cup (about 2 ounces) shaved Manchego cheese
Preheat the oven to 450°F. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the asparagus with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and roast for 15 minutes, until tender.
Transfer the asparagus to a platter and drizzle with the lemon juice and the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Scatter the cheese over the asparagus, sprinkle with the almonds, and serve with lemon wedges.
Serves 6 — Recipe adapted from Food and Wine, December 2003