The Gastrosite of Spanish Recipes

A Guide to Cooking Correctly by Carlos Mirasierras

Beans stewed with clams and prawns

(Alubias con almejas y gambas)

16 Beans stewed with clams and prawns

Ingredients for 4 servings: 11 oz. of white beans, soaked in water from the night before (*); 1 large onion, cut into julienne; 1 carrot and 1 leek stalk, both cut into half-moon slices; 2 tomatoes, cut into quarters; 3-4 oz. of prawns, peeled; 2-3 clams, soaked in salted water from the previous night to eliminate any remaining sand; 1 l of fish stock.

Preparation: Cook the beans until they're soft with some salt, remove from the heat, sieve and set aside on a warm place. Sauté the veggies until they soften; add the fish stock, simmer for some mins, mix with the hand blender and strain through a china cap (this can be done the previous day).

Sauté the prawns, and put the clams in a small pot with a little bit of hot fish stock and wait until the clams open.And finally, mix the beans with the veggies cooked in the fish stock, the clams and the small amount of stock used to cook them until open. (*) Canned white beans can also be used; discard though the cooking liquid and rinse the beans with abundant water.

Shepherd Soup (Sopa de Pastor)

17 Shepherd

Four servings: 4 cups of beef stock; 6 slices of dried-out baguette bread; 4 eggs; 1 roasted red pepper; 1 onion; 2garlic cloves; 2-3 tbsp of finely chopped parsley; 2 slices of Serrano ham, chopped into small dice; salt to taste; olive oil to sauté

Preparation: Chop the pepper, the garlic and the onion into slices . Sautée the garlic and the bread in a frying pan with some olive oil and remove before both elements burn. Fry the onion and the red pepper in the same oil, and return the bread and the garlic to the same pan. Add the beef broth to the preparation and bring to a boil. Crack the eggs into a bowl (so no piece of egg shell will get into the soup), and add them to the soup. Serve the soup straightaway once the eggs are set. Sprinkle some finely chopped parsley (to taste) on each soup dish.

Veggies soup (Menestra de verduras)

18 Veggies soup

Four servings: 1lb. raw carrots; 1 lb. green beans; 1 15 oz. canned artichoke hearts; 1 15 oz. canned peas; 2 turnips; 3 oz. of serrano ham (1 slice 1/8 inch thick); 4 - 6 tbsp ofSpanish olive oil; 1tbsp of flour; 1 yellow onion; salt to taste.

Preparation: Peel and chop the carrots, the onions and the turnip into small cubes. Cut the serrano ham into small dice. Slightly fry the ham dice in a large pot, add the chopped onion and sauté for 5 minutes on a medium heat. Next add the flour, stir well so it doesn't cling to the bottom, add the chopped carrots and water (or a light broth) to cover the ingredients and let it all simmer for some time.Add the green beans and the turnip when the first ingredients are half-cooked. Salt to taste and continue simmering until all ingredients are cooked to a point where they are a bit soft but notmushy. Now you can add the canned artichokes and canned peas, and let them get some heat.

Leek and codfish soup (Porrusalda)

19 Porrusalda

Four servings: ½ kilo of desalted codfish, shredded into 1-inch pieces; 350 g of potatoes; 3 leeks,3 garlic cloves; 2 or 3 carrots, sliced; salt & olive oil; and 500 ml of a light veggies broth.

Preparation: Heat some olive oil in a casserole and start sautéing the leek, the carrots and the garlic; after some minutes, add the potatoes and continue sautéing for 4-5 minutes. Next, add the light veggies broth to almost cover the ingredients, let simmer for 13-17 minutes. Finally add the codfish and let simmer for another 3 minutes before serving.


Garlic soup (Sopa de ajo)

20 Garlic soup

This is a very economical and delicious soup that was devised by peasants to kill their hunger and warm their bodies in the long winter nights of a God-forgotten Spain. The idea was to make a good use of bread leftovers, as even bread was very expensive in those dire days.

Four servings: Garlic: 1 and half bulb; four 1-inch thick dried out baguette slices of bread (100 g/0.22 pounds); 1 liter and a half of a light stock (1 1/2 L of water enriched with 2 stock cubes will do); 2/3 eggs; 4 tbsp of olive oil; black pepper (1tsp), salt (1 tsp).

Preparation: Shred the bread into small pieces and add it to the stock. In the meantime, peel the garlic cloves and fried them in a sauce pan with the oil on a medium fire ring until the cloves get a brownish color. Keep aside part of the oil and starts mashing the garlic, the pepper, the red paprika and the salt in a mortar to get a brownish-red paste that will be incorporated to the stock together with part of the oil. Stir the soup with a wire whip to allow the bread get thinner and to obtain a good mixture of all the ingredients. Crack the eggs and stir both yolks and whites in the mortar with a fork (don't use this time the wire whip as it would add air to mixture, and this is not a dessert). Finally, allow the soup to simmer for 10 minutes, cut the fire and slowly add the whisked eggs while stirring the soup with a fork to mix all the ingredients.




Castilian stew and soup (Cocido madrileño)

21 Castilian stew and soup

Four servings: 1/2 k of shank; 1/2 stewing chicken; 1pig'strotter, quartered; 1/2 k of chickpeas;1 marrow bone (4-5 inch-long); 100 g of streaky pork in a piece; 100 g of dry-cured ham; 1 chorizo sausage; 1 blackpudding sausage; 150 g of short noodles; 1 carrot; 1 cabbage; 6 medium-sized potatoes;oil, some garlic cloves, celery, paprika, saffron, and salt.

Preparation: Keep the chickpeas soaked in water from theprevious night; a good trick is to add some baking soda in the soaking water toimprove the cooking process; this water will be eventually discarded.

Pour 1600 cc of cold water into a pressurecooker, add the shank, the pork, the marrow bone, the cured ham, the pig'strotter, and the stewing chicken.Letall these elements almost reach boiling point before adding the carrot, thecelery, the chickpeas, and the salt. Next, lock the pressure cooker and letsimmer for 16-18 minutes; after this time, open the cooker, and add thepotatoes, the chorizo and blood sausages, the cabbage, cut into quarters.

Lock again the cooker, let 4-6 minutes more; andfinally open it again, sieve the liquid from the meats, discard the marrow boneand reserve the meats, veggies, potatoes in a warm place (a preheated oven forexample), and use the broth produced to cook the small noodles. The resulting soupwill be the first course, and the remaining elements can be arranged on a trayfrom which the second course will be served. Sprinkle some paprika (to thetaste) on the stewed ingredients and also drizzle on them some extra virgin oil(recommended).



Catalan stew and soup with assorted meats and veggies

(Escudella i carn d'olla)

22 Catalan soup and stew

Six servings: 500 g ground beef meat; 1/4 stewing chicken; 1 chicken cut into quarts; 200 g of raw pig's ear and snout; 1/2 pig's trotter"; 1 ham dry-cured ham marrowbone; 100 g streaky pork; a big piece of backbone; 2 beefmarrow bones pieces; 150 g of white Catalan sausage; 150 g black Catalan sausage (both types of sausages are known as Butifarra blanca y Butifarra negra, respectively); 250 g chickpeas, soaked previously in water 12 hr; 1cabbage; 250 g peeled potatoes (rather small ones, or cut into cubes); 1turnip; 1 carrot; 1 leek; 1 branch celery.

Ingredients for the meatballs: 200 g ground pork meat; 250 g ground beef pork; 1eggs; 2 tbsp bread crumbs (finely ground); 1 garlic clove, finely chopped; parsley; salt; and flour.

Ingredients for the soup: 400 g "galets" (a type of snail-shaped pasta piece).

Preparation of the meatballs: Mix both types of meats together with the egg, the parsley, the garlic, some salt and pepper, first with a fork and then with both hands to make a meat mass, which must be cut into 4 quarts to form 4 meatballs that will be dredged in flour and subsequently added to the stock.

Preparation of the soup:

Put the pig's trotters, ear and snout, together with the stewing chicken, chicken and bone pieces in a big pot and cover it sufficiently with water. Next, bring the pot to a boil and start to skim off the fat and other oily impurities released by the ingredients; after some 10 minutes add the chickpeas and bring back the pot to a boil. This done, add the carrot, the turnip, the celery, and skim off again. Let it all simmer for 90 minutes, a period long enough to render the meats soft. Then, add the cabbage, the potatoes, the sausages, the meat balls (pilotas).

Let the pot simmer another half hour, check the salt taste, and add salt if necessary. Next, sieve all the ingredients, collect the soup where the "galets" will be cooked, place all the veggies, potatoes, chickpeas and meats on serving dish to be kept in a warm place (a preheated oven, for example). The galets will be boiled in the soup according to the manufacturer's instructions, while the rest of ingredients will constitute the second course. Drizzle oil and add some salt and pepper to taste.


Fish soup (Sopa de pescado)

23 Fish soup

Four servings:100 g rice; 1/4 k angler fish; 1/4 K clams (whether fresh or frozen, soak the clam in brine water toget rid of the sand they may content; 1/4 K of mussels, 2 garlic cloves; 1 onion, finely chopped; 1 tbsp tomato purée; Olive oil, salt, 1 bay leave, parsley, and some saffron.

Step 1: Prepare the fish stock by simmering the fish's bones, head and other parts that are not commercially viable, together with the bay leave and the parsley. Simmer for 20 minutes, sieve the stockand reserve itfor a later use. Any fish stock must not simmer more than 20 minutes with the fish bones, or other elements, as it would turn bitter to the taste.

Step 2: Fry the onion and the tomato to produce the sofrito base; add some of the fish stock previously reserved (2-3 tbsp) to thin out the sofrito base, and let the preparation simmer for 10-12 minutes on a mild heat. Next, add the whole amount of fish stock, let it reach boiling point and add the rice, and 8 minutes later add the fish cut into pieces and the clams and mussels without their shells.


Spanish bean stew (Fabada asturiana)

24 Fabada Asturiana

Ingredients for 4 servings: 500 g Asturian white beans (fabes de la Ganja), soaked in water the night before; 2 Asturian chorizos; 2 Asturian blood sausages (black pudding); 100 g shoulder of pork (a salted presentation of this piece of pork meat that is soaked in water to desalt it and which can be replaced by 1-inch slice bacon it) 100 g cured pork (replaced by 100 g bacon), 1 onion, 2 garlic cloves, some parsley, and salt

Preparation: The first step is to have the beans soaked in cold water for at least 12 hours. They first become wrinkled but rehydrate again in no time. Also soak the meats in another bowl, but in lukewarm water. Next day place the meats first and the beans in a pot using the same soaking water; add the onion, the parsley, and the garlic cloves. Put the pot on a medium-to-high heat, and start to skim off the fat bubbles resulting from the boiling process.

From time to time, add some cold water (not in excess) to cut the boiling process. This is called "frightening the beans" (asustar las fabes); it stabilizes the stew, or so they say. Next, lower the heat to a minimum level until it gets to a boiling point again and keep this rhythm of boiling for 3 hours, while checking that the beans get soft. Add the salt only at the conclusion of the recipe, never at the beginning as the meats used were salted; if the broth is too liquid, mash some beans in a mortar and add them to the broth.


Lentils soup with spare ribs

(Lentejas con costilla de cerdo)

25 Lentils soup with spare ribs

Four servings: 250 g lentils; 150 g pork spare ribs, chopped; some chorizo slices; 1 carrot, sliced; 1 onion, finely chopped; 4 tbsp tomato purée; 2 garlic cloves, peeled; 1 slice bread fried in oil; 1 bay leave; 1 litter chicken/veggies broth;

Preparation: Salt and pepper the spare ribs and fry them in a casserole with some oil until they get brown color, and set aside.Next, add the chorizo slices, let them fry very lightly, add the onion, and let simmer for some time on a medium heat. After some minutes add the tomato purée, let simmer another ten minutes (add some of the stock if you see the ingredients look to thick). In the meantime, pound the garlic cloves and the fried bread in a mortar, and add the result is added to the casserole together with the bay leave. Finally, add the lentils and the stock; at first you will think there's too much water, but lentils absorb a lot of liquid, so keep an eye on them to see if they need more water (not more broth)The cooking time now is around 45-55 minutes (depending on the type of lentils). A pressure cooker can also be used, although taking into account the frying procedure explained before.




Fresh tuna-fish stewed with potatoes


26 Marmitaco, tuna stew

Four servings: 500 g (1.1 lbs) of tuna fish cut into 1-inch cubes; 3/4potatoes (1.1lbs); cut into 1-in chunks; 1 red pepper; cut into brunoise; 1 green pepper; cut likewise; tomato purée, 8 tbsp; 2 medium sized onions cut into brunette; the pulp of a rehydrated "pimiento chorizero" (a dried-up red pepper used to color and flavor pork meat in the production of chorizos).

Preparation: Start frying the onion dices in a casserole on a medium heat ring and add some salt; after some 10 minutes start adding the red and green peppers, and stir the ingredients with a spatula. Keep stewing all the vegetables for a minimum of 5 minutes, and then add the tomato, and after another 5 minutes add the potatoes, the pulp of the rehydrated pepper (or its substitute) and stew on a medium heat for 20 minutes. Salt the tuna cubes before they are added to the stew and allow a 2-minute cooking (no more than that as the fish cubes would become less juicy). This dish should be consumed before it gets cold.


White beans stewed with black pudding

(Alubias blancas con morcilla)

27 White beans stewed with black pudding


Ingredients for 6 servings: 18 oz. dry white beans; 3 oz. chorizo;4 oz. spare rib; 1 oz. cured pork; 6 oz. black pudding; 1 carrot, sliced, 4 tbsp Biscay sauce.

Preparation: Keep the beans soaked in water from the night before. Cut the spare ribs and the salt pork into cubes, but leave the chorizo whole. Next, place all the ingredients in a pot with enough water to cover them and start to simmer on a low heat. The water must be at room temperature as this facilitates the expansion of flavors from the ingredients to the surrounding liquid, which will constitute the soup. The boiling process must be slow and continued until the beans get a soft consistency, so it will prevent beans from braking. The Biscay sauce must be added during the boiling time. The chorizo will be cut into slices when the soup is to be served.





Related links to this webpage:


Kidney beans, benefits of clams, Leeks, beef meat, porrusalda,  veggies soup diet,  codfish,

benefits of garlic, history of stews, fish soups, lamb meat, chrorizo, black pudding, lentils,      






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