'These are the sort of recipes that I can't wait to cook: honest, rugged and colourful, you know everything is going to taste deeply Spanish.' Rick Stein
Nieves Barragán Mohacho is the renowned Spanish chef behind the highly anticipated restaurant Sabor, opening in London this autumn. Nieves was previously executive chef at London's acclaimed Barrafina restaurants, where she was awarded a Michelin star for Barrafina Frith Street. Sabor: Flavours from a Spanish Kitchen is the food that the Basque-born chef likes to cook when she's off duty; the food that she grew up eating and the food that she still makes for friends and family. The recipes range from hearty dishes such as braised Iberian pork ribs and chorizo and potato stew, to lighter fare such as seafood skewers, clams in salsa verde and stuffed piquillo peppers, and a wealth of other recipes, from grilled hispi cabbage to baked cauliflower with salted almonds, chilli and shallots.
Mohacho, executive chef of London's Barrafina, presents the flavors of Spain in this enthusiastic debut cookbook. Regional specialties highlighted include salted anchovies, and the cal ot, an onion "between a fat spring onion, and a baby leek" that is blackened over an open flame and eaten with romesco sauce. Mohacho makes excellent use of stale bread in such homey dishes as migas, in which bread cubes are saut ed with vegetables, chorizo, and blood sausage and topped with crispy fried eggs; and a salad of persimmons and goat cheese, for which a loaf is frozen and cut into thin slices for croutons. The many fish and seafood options include a Catalan salad of rehydrated salt cod marinated overnight in olive oil; minced squid and shrimp rolled into balls and served in an onion and saffron sauce; and stuffed squid in a black sauce made with its ink and crab in a spicy tomato sauce. A meat and poultry chapter includes lamb sweetbreads and butifarra sausage (some ingredients, such as the sausage itself, may be difficult to source), and a short chapter on desserts leans mostly on classics, such as flan and sponge cakes brushed with rum syrup until "borracho," or drunk. Mohacho's gusto for bold flavors will delight readers.