Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Tapas: Spanish roasted peppers

This easy Spanish "tapa" can double as a first course, or side dish. Roasted red peppers are marinated  olive oil, vinegar and fresh minced garlic. Enjoy the peppers on a slice of rustic bread, or as a side dish. Served cold, it makes a great dish for warm summer days. Covered, these peppers keep well in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Shopping list:

  • 3 Whole roasted peppers
  • 2 Cloves garlic
  • Spanish sherry vinegar
  • Olive oil 
  • If whole roasted peppers are not available in your supermarket, or if you prefer freshly roasted peppers, you must first roast the red bell peppers, peel and de-seed them. Peppers can be roasted in the oven or over a BBQ grill.Use a dinner-size plate or platter with a lip, so that they oil and vinegar do not spill over the side.
    If using bell peppers: Remove seeds from the roasted peppers, if any.
    Cut each pepper in four pieces and lay on a dinner plate or platter.

    Peel and mince garlic cloves. Place minced garlic in a small bowl and pour in a few tablespoons each of vinegar and oil. Whisk and carefully pour over the peppers.
    Serve with slices of rustic bread as a tapa or as a side dish with a meal. These peppers go well with a main course of grilled meat or fish.

Tapas: Gambas with garlic

One of the most common tapas of Spain, gambas al ajillo is quick, easy and FULL of garlic flavor. It's truly a classic tapa. Fresh shrimp, sauteed in olive oil and lots of garlic, with a touch of Spanish paprika and a splash of brandy all combine to create one of the most popular tapas. A pinch of red pepper flakes gives the sauce a slight bite. 
This recipe makes 4 servings as an appetizer. If preparing for a main course, double the recipe.

Shopping list:
  • 500 Gr shrimp, 25 count to a pound
  • 4 large cloves of garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tsp sweet Spanish paprika
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 60-90 ml cognac (or substitute dry sherry)
  • 125 ml virgin olive oil
  • 3 tsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 lemon for juice
  • 1 fresh baguette, sliced
In a sauté pan or heavy frying pan, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and sauté for about one minute or until they just begin to brown. Be careful not to burn the garlic!
Raise the heat to high and immediately add the shrimp, lemon juice, sherry or cognac and paprika. Stir well, then sauté, stirring briskly until the shrimp turn pink and curl – about 3 minutes.
Remove from heat and transfer shrimp with oil and sauce to a warm plate or serve right from the pan. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Sprinkle with parsley.
Serve with fresh bread.

  • This recipe is prepared in Spain with the shells on or off, depending on the cook. So, if you prefer, peel the shrimp before cooking.
  • If using frozen shrimp, rinse under cold water and pat dry. Allow for a longer cooking time for shrimp that are not completely thawed, and be sure to cook thoroughly.

Tapas: Spicy Spanish Pork recipe

This recipe is popular in the region of Castilla-Leon. Cubes of pork are marinated overnight in a spicy mixture of paprika, garlic and white wine. Then the pork is quickly stir-fried and served with bread and/or fried potatoes. This is a very easy Spanish recipe that can be made as a "tapa" or a main course. If you do not eat pork, substitute beef.

As tapa it is for 6 persons, as a main dish for 4.

Shopping list:

It's in the brown bowl
  • 1 KG lean pork, cut into 1 cubes
  • 1 Tbsp hot paprika
  • 2 Tbsp sweet paprika
  • 3 Cloves of garlic, diced very small or put through a garlic press
  • 1 Cup white wine
  • Pinch of oregano
  • Pinch of salt
  • French-style bread and/or fried potatoes to accompany

    Place cubes of pork in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle hot paprika, sweet paprika, oregano and garlic over top. Mix with a wooden spoon or your hands. Add the white wine and mix thoroughly. Cover tightly with a lid or plastic wrap. Place in refrigerator for at least 24 hours.
    When ready to cook the meat, place 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan and heat on medium heat. Remove meat from refrigerator and fry in pan. Salt to taste.
    BBQ Method: To cook on the barbecue, simply slide meat cubes on skewers and grill, careful not to overcook.

Apple flaps

From our friend Jean-Luc we got this recipe, that even I could make. I call them apple flaps and within 30 minutes you have a nice treat.
You will get about 8 flaps, so you have to make 16 circles!

Shopping list:
1 Apple, I have used 'Pomme Canada' but every cooking apple will do
Christal or brown sugar
Puff pastry (I have used the one that was already made)
1 Egg
Lemon juice (additional)

Roll out the puff pastry and cut them into circles and prick them with a fork
Put them on baking paper on a oven tray
Cut the apple into small junks and put in a bowl
Add sugar, cinnamon and lemon juice to taste

Now fill the pastry circles with the filling and cover them
Mix your egg and paint over the flaps
Sprinkle some sugar

Put it in the pre-heated oven (180 degrees) and it's ready in about 20 minutes.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Some of the meals we prepared

A you tube video with some of the meals we have prepared for guests. In the meantime enjoy pictures of Au Bellefleur, the guest rooms, the garden, the bistro and surroundings.

Just click hereunder.

Au Bellefleur