I’ve been back from Spain for less than 48 hours and I’m already one recipe in to my new love affair with Spanish cooking. Prepare yourself for a wave of recipes from Spain.
We’re Going to Spain?! Okay!
My husband and I do one big international trip a year, and this year, Spain was our destination. My husband is fluent is Spanish and has been there several times for work (this made it a really easy trip!), but I’d never been.
We spent a week in the southern region of Spain known as Andalucia, and also hit Madrid. Our favorite part of the trip was - by far - the days we spent in Malaga and Granada. Granada for its history, and Malaga for its food.
Malaga is right on the Mediterranean, so we ate seafood at every meal: tuna, salmon, octopus, sardines, red snapper, calamari. Add a large salad, a few plates of fresh grilled or roasted seafood, some wine, a bowl of olives, and a few pieces of bread (YES, wine and bread - I’ll blog more on that later) - and you have meal that I will literally never get sick of.
France v. Spain
If you’ve read my blog for very long, you know I’m a diehard Francophile. Paris is my favorite city in the world. Well, watch your back, France. Spain is a contender.
It was a bit of a dark horse destination. I had no idea what to expect; I was so busy with work leading up to the trip that I had no time to research or wrap my brain around where we were going.
“I’ll figure it out when I get there,” I told myself.
Well, I figured out pretty quickly that Spain has the food, coffee, and wine situation locked down. At every meal, I was snapping photos and making notes, researching ingredients and cooking methods, and figuring out how I could re-create these dishes back in my own kitchen at home so I could share them with you.
Maybe a trip to Spain isn’t in the cards for you right now, but stick around here and I’ll get you as close as I can with the food. Deal?
Pisto con Huevo
Pisto is stewed vegetables: a combination of onions, peppers, garlic, tomatoes, zucchini and eggplant. It’s like the Spanish equivalent of Italy’s Ratatouille.
Top it with an egg and you’ve got a killer breakfast, lunch or dinner. We had it for dinner last night and added both, as well as a little crumbled Chorizo for extra protein. You could also eat it as more of a side dish to a piece of grilled seafood or chicken.
Pisto a great way to pack in loads of veggies and it tasted even better the next day. This recipe makes A LOT, so feel free to cut the recipe in half or (better idea) just freeze what you won’t eat and save it for later.
Make this on a weekend when you have a little extra time. There’s a LOT of chopping involved, and for best results, each vegetable is cooked separately before combining them together. The end result is so worth it and you’ll make enough to feed a small army.
When I came home from teaching BODYPUMP this morning, I reheated a big bowl of this and fried two eggs. I added some grated Manchego on top and had a BOMB breakfast in under 10 minutes.
Oh P.S. I eat eggplant now, too. SEE WHAT I MEAN!? This freaking trip got me eating all kinds of crazy things. Octopus and eggplant!
2 red bell peppers, diced
2 green bell peppers, diced
2 large onions, diced
3 small zucchini, diced
1 eggplant, peeled and diced
2 pounds of tomatoes, peeled and diced OR 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes
5 cloves of garlic, minced
a pinch of fresh rosemary, thyme, and oregano, finely chopped
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. coconut sugar or honey
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
To serve: fried eggs, crumbled chorizo, shaved Manchego cheese
Place diced eggplant on paper-towl lined baking sheet and sprinkle with salt. Let rest for 10 mins., then rinse the eggplant in a colander.
“WHY DO I NEED TO DO THIS STEP!?” Read HERE and decide for yourself.
Put two large saucepans on the stove over medium heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil to each pan. You’re going to cook two batches of veggies at once: first the onions and peppers, then the zucchini and eggplant.
ONIONS: Add the onions and a pinch of salt to one of the pans. Sauté until transparent, then cover and reduce heat to low. Once cooked, transfer to a very large bowl.
PEPPERS: Add the peppers and a pinch of salt to the other pan. Sauté over a medium heat, then lower heat medium-low and cover for ~10 mins. Transfer to large bowl with the onions.
ZUCCHINI: Add a drizzle of olive oil to the pan you cooked the onions in. Set heat back to medium and add the zucchini with a pinch of salt. Sauté until lightly browned, then reduce heat to medium-low and cover. Cook for ~10 mins. Transfer to the bowl with the cooked peppers and onions.
EGGPLANT: Add a drizzle of olive oil to the pan you cooked the peppers in. Set heat back to medium and add the diced, salted, rinsed eggplant. Add a pinch of salt and sauté until lightly browned, then reduce heat to medium-low and cover. Cook for ~10 mins. Transfer to the bowl with all the other vegetables and stir to combine.
To the bowl of cooked veggies, add the chopped fresh herbs and 1 tsp. cumin. Stir to combine.
To a large deep saucepan over medium heat, add a drizzle of olive oil. Add the diced garlic and cayenne pepper (if using). Stir and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomatoes or canned diced tomatoes and juices. Simmer for about 20 minutes, the add the 1 tsp. of sugar and taste for salt.
Add the giant bowl of cooked vegetables to the tomatoes and stir to combine. Cook for 10 minutes to allow flavors to meld. Taste and adjust any seasonings as needed.
Ladle into serving bowls and top with a fried egg (Huevo) crumbled Chorizo, shaved Manchego - OR ALL 3!