Garbanzos in Vinaigrette; Albondigas

Had to go down to the beach place for a few days and there's no connectivity down there so that was my excuse du jour for not posting.

It's from the camera phone so not too clear (a dirty lens maybe).
Basically Garbanzo salad - with a vinagrette of brunoised tomato, red and green peppers, chopped green onions, and some white wine vinegar. Simple, tasty. Leave to sit for a while to let the flavors blend. That's some crumbled hard boiled egg sprinkled on top.

These are simple meatballs in their sauce surrounded by superfine julienned potatoes, (deep) fried as straws.

That was lunch at El Cafétin. Oh, plus wine (tinto) with Casera and a bit of rice pudding for dessert.

Mojo Picón; Red Garlic Sauce

This red paprika & garlic sauce is the primary topping for Papa Arrugas. Ther'es a green variant too that uses cilantro (but no paprika)

Makes: 1 cup
Takes: 15 minutes
Equipment: A large mortar & pestle (large enough to hold the whole mixture), a stick mixer (batidora). Or, failing a mortar & batidora some equivalent mixing device (maybe a blender)


  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 t cumin seeds
  • 2 small dried chilies (deseeded)
  • some salt
  • 3 T breadcrumbs
  • 1 T paprika (sweet [regular] or smoky [chorizo]) (pimenton)
  • 2 T red wine vinegar
  • 4-5 T olive oil
  • 1/2 C water, approx
  • 2 T tomato sauce (tomate frito)
  1. Using a mortar and pestle mash the garlic, cumin and the chilis with salt [salt acts as a catalyst for the crushing action).
    If you don't have a mortar & pestle add the vinegar now and use the stick mixer or whatever. The mortar is preferred because it gives a smoother flavor & texture.
    These are the main flavor ingrenients so mash then together really well. There will be no chunks of garlic and the cumin seed will have been pulverised; you might still see flakes of peppers (they do not pulverise well).
  2. Add the paprika, vinegar, oil; continue to mash it around (you can switch to the batidora now if you like. For authenticity keep going with the mortar right until the end)
  3. Add the bread crumbs; mash some more (it will be pasty)
  4. Add 1/2 the water; mash
  5. Taste. If it's too spicy add a tablespoon or 2 of tomato sauce to quiet it down. If it's bland add salt. If it's not hot enough add maybe add a chili sauce - something like tabasco)
  6. Slowly add additional water until a saucy consistency is reached (think of a thin ketchup style). A consistency that's good for spooning over and sticking to the boiled potatoes (see previous recipe)

Papas Arrugas; Wrinkled Potatoes

Was just down in the Canary Islands for a week. The local potato dish is the tradicional recipe for small new potatoes cooked in a lot of salt water and that come out with wrinkled skin. Very fast and easy.

Best served with the traditional red paprika sauce (slightly hot).

Serves 6


  • 1 Kg baby potatoes (new, yukon gold maybe)
  • 1/3 C sea salt (don't be shy about it; use a 1/2 cup)
  • lemon slices
  • 1 cole leaf
  1. Put potatoes in a single layer in a wide pot.Add water to half way up the potatoes (not quite covering the smallest ones).
  2. Add the sea salt (swirl around a little) (the traditional method used sea water; it was, after all, developed on an island)
  3. Add 4-5 slices of lemon if you've got them
  4. Bring the water to a boil and cover the pot with a tea towel (or a cole leaf to be traditional)
  5. Reduce heat to medium (still boiling slightly, not just simmering), and cook until done (the water will evaporate a lot)
    - "Done" is when a fork can pierce them and pull out without picking up the potato {don't use a knife; it's not as accurate as a fork}
    «maybe 15 minutes»
  6. - the skins will begin to"wrinkle" some; and will wrinkle more afer the next steps.
  7. Drain by pouring the excess water out of the pot (don't use a colander; you want the residual salt in the bottom)
  8. Turn off the fire (if using electric; else set to lowest possible heat), put the pot back on and dry the potatoes
  9. Shake, swirl the pot every once in a while (30 secs?) to coat the potatoes with salt evenly
  10. Serve with Mojo Picón (red sauce), eat with or without skins
Those freaked about the amount of salt involved can
  1. use the minimum amount of salt
  2. drain with a colander
  3. peel the skin off before eating (it peels easily because it's been wrinkled)
The mojo recipe will come later. It's blindingly simple too.

A very good book. Made these brownies from it.
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Vacation & Holidays

I've just returned from 3 weeks in Canada, visiting family; then suddenly had to go to Fuerteventura for a week's holiday (to rest up from my vacation I guess). I'm back. Maybe I'll post something.