Saturday, May 23, 2009

tapas are perfect

Tonight we had gorgeous fresh shrimp from H Mart to use, so I grabbed Penelope Casas’ cookbook, just titled “Tapas” (that link is the new edition, ours is older, but the recipe is a classic so I’d be surprised if she took it out), and got the recipe for shrimp in a spicy tomato sauce.



Seriously, this might be the best shrimp I’ve ever made. The sauce was UNREAL- full of onions, garlic, herbs, olive oil, tomato, wine… so flavorful and complex, even though it only cooks for twenty minutes or so. And the technique was spot on: the shrimp was cooked really well (you sear it really quickly in a super hot pan, then let it finish gently cooking in the sauce so it soaks up the flavors).

It really tasted like the tapas I’ve had at restaurants! I love the whole idea of tapas- take a few really quality, fresh, ingredients, prepare them in a way that highlights their integrity, and eat, in a fun, social, relaxed, sharing manner. And I would so rather nibble on lots of fun little things than have some big plate of meat and potatoes!

To accompany, my mom made a seriously gorgeous salad with awesome Spanish/Mediterranean flavors:


This is Spring Mix greens, oranges, kalamata olives, the last of my cheese, and a beautiful parsley shallot vinaigrette. It was SO GOOD. I seriously could not stop eating it.

Here’s everyone all together:


I was already planning this recipe this afternoon, and I thought, hey, what better to soak up the flavors than GORGEOUS HOMEMADE CRUSTY BREAD! This was a GOOD ONE, and can be found here, for other bakers (I used all whole wheat flour, halved it –the halved recipe still made two small loaves-- and added 1 tbsp flax for healthy fat).

And yeah, just in case the sauce wasn’t good enough on the shrimp, wiped up with yeasty wheaty crispy crusty homemade bread? HEAVEN!

I had another yummy breakfast featuring more H Mart fabulousness:


Oats and CHERRIES!

The oats were nice and banana-y this morning, because I was hunting through the freezer and wanting to make a double batch (for me and my mom) and I found one half banana and one 3/4 of a banana. So we got a lil extra! And I topped it with walnuts, cause I’d been craving them.


But let’s talk about these:


THESE CHERRIES ARE UNREAL! Soooooooo tasty and perfect and ripe and delicious! I actually don’t know what variety they are: as you can tell by the color, they aren’t Bing, because at this color they are PERFECTLY RIPE.

I ate them basically all morning. This was just part one.

Lunch was hers and hers salads, which I made for my mom and me. Both featured mixed greens leftover from last night’s sashimi platter, steamed green beans, carrots, and parsley dressing. I topped each of ours with stuff that had to be used up in the fridge

Mine with tuna:


Mom’s with chicken (only a wee bit left) and shrooms:


Hahaha, I love that the sun went behind a cloud when I took mine. You can totally tell!

Finally, fabbity fab home brewed iced tea:


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