Paint the World Red with La Tomatina Festival

The great cultural extravaganza Spanish food fight festival, La Tomatina is here. Hope you enjoyed my last year’s tomato and meat recipe, Meatballs with Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce. The fest gets popular from year to year with the streets of Bunol running blood red with juicy tomato. The festival is welcomed by singing, dancing, parades, fireworks etc.

The festival is complete fun but let’s adhere to the rules as well. Just have a look:-

-Bring your goggles to avoid acidic tomato pulp going into the eyes

-Squish tomatoes before throwing on one another such that it does not hurt anyone

-Avoid bottles and other sharp objects

-Girls must wear bikini underneath clothes

-Wear tight and strong shoes.

Let’s add some more spice to La Tomatina with Spicy Fire Roasted Tomatoes and Tortellini Soup

Spicy Fire Roasted Tomatoes and Tortellini Soup

Spicy Fire Roasted Tomatoes and Tortellini Soup

Ingredients:-

1 Clove Garlic,

Salt as required,

6 oz. fresh Tortellini,

1 quart Chicken Broth,

8 leaves chopped Basil,

1 chopped Green Chilly,

10 oz. chopped Spinach,

Black Pepper as required,

2 tablespoons Unsalted Butter,

Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano,

14 oz. canned diced fire Roasted Tomatoes with liquid.

Preparation Method:-

  1. Melt butter in a saucepan. Put over medium-high heat. Add garlic, chillies and saute until fragrant. This takes two minutes. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil.

  2. Now add tortellini and cook halfway for two minutes. Add canned tomatoes and their liquid. Reduce heat to simmer. Cook until the tortellini is soft.

  3. Stir fry spinach and basil in butter for five minutes on simmer. Add this and cheese in soup and cook for 2 minutes.

  4. Serve hot! I love pairing the soup with cheese and garlic bread. What do you pair it with?

Tomatina Festival, Bunol, Spain

Tomatina Festival, Bunol, Spain

Enjoy La Tomatina!

Celebrate the Seville Fair with Crema Catalana

The spring season in Seville, Spain comes with a special atmosphere. It brings with it the intoxicating fragrance of jasmine and orange blossoms. This is not all, spring also brings with it two major events, Semana Santa and the Spring Fair. The Seville Fair AKA Spring Fair takes place in Los-Remedios, that is next to the river. The event calls for singing, dancing, eating, drinking and ofcourse socializing. The attraction includes parades, horse rides, bullfights etc. wherein bullfight is the best part.

Crema Catalana

Crema Catalana

Hope you liked my Spanish meat recipe, Meatballs with Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce. I’m trying a dessert this time. Crema Catalana is AKA Catalan Cream. It is actually Spanish variation of French dessert called Creme brulee. It is considered as a great spring dessert. This is a quick and easy recipe. The best part is that this dessert can be prepared in advance. All you need to do is refrigerating it 3 hours before serving. And just as cheese, it will melt in your mouth. So let’s all dance to the beat of the Spanish music with mushy and sugar treat, the Crema Catalana.

Crema Catalana

Ingredients:-

2 cups Milk,

1 cup Sugar,

4 Egg Yolks,

1 Cinnamon stick,

1⁄2 grated Lemon rind,

1 tablespoon Cornstarch.

Preparation Method:-

  1. Take a bowl. Beat the egg yolks and 3/4 cup sugar until blended. Let the mixture turn frothy. Add cinnamon stick and grated lemon rind. Mix cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of cold milk. When well mixed, return it to the remaining 2 cups of milk.

  2. Take a pot. Pour in milk. Slowly heat the mixture. Stir constantly until thick. Remove pot from heat immediately. Prevent it from curdling or separating.

  3. The texture of the finished crema will be grainy. This is exactly how it should be. Remove the cinnamon stick. Ladle the milk mixture into 4 ramekins. Allow to cool. Then refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Before serving, preheat the broiler.

  4. Remove ramekins with the crema catalana from refrigerator. Sprinkle the rest of the sugar over each ramekin. When broiler is hot, place the ramekins under the broiler on the top shelf. Allow the sugar to caramelize, turning golden brown.

  5. This may take 10 minutes. Remove and serve immediately. Serve warm or cold as per choice.

    Spanish Dance

    Spanish Dance

La Tomatina Festival

La Tomatina is held each year in Spain in the month of August. This food fight festival includes people throwing more than a hundred metric tons of over-ripe tomatoes at each other. People participate in the paella cooking competition, a night before the tomato fight. The first event of La Tomatina first begins at 11:00 am. The festival is accompanied by music, dance, parades and lots of fireworks. Hope you liked my last recipe from Spain, the great Spanish Omelette. So let’s prepare a recipe rich in tomatoes to celebrate La Tomatina to the fullest. Today I’ll be preparing Meatballs with Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce that takes only 30 minutes and forms a great appetizer (dry) or main course (gravy). You can also prepare veggie balls with cheese and vegetables. The main course can be served with spaghetti or rice.

Meatballs with Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce

Meatballs with Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce

Meatballs with Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce

For Meatballs:-

1 egg,

1/4 teaspoon Pepper,

500 grams ground Beef,

1/2 teaspoon Garlic salt,

4 medium Green onions,

1/4 cup unseasoned Dry bread crumbs.

Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce

Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce

For the Tomato Sauce:-

1/2 cup Water,

2 tablespoons Wine vinegar,

3/4 cup chopped dried Cherries,

1 Handful chopped fresh Chives,

25.5 oz fire roasted Tomato pasta sauce.

1. Preheat the oven to 400 D. F. Mix meatball ingredients in a large bowl. Shape into 25 (1 1/2 Inches) meatballs. Place on an ungreased pan.

2. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes or until thoroughly cooked. You can check this with the help of tooth-prick, the meat must not stick to it.

3. Meanwhile, in 3-quart saucepan, heat all sauce ingredients except chives. Boil it, stir occasionally. Reduce the heat. Stir in meatballs. Sprinkle with chives. Serve hot!

Tomatina Festival, Bunol, Spain

Tomatina Festival, Bunol, Spain

Enjoy La Tomatina Festival!

Bullfight Celebration with Special Spanish Omelette and Drinks

Bullfight is AKA tauromachia or tauromachy. This tradition is observed in Spain, Portugal, Philippines, France and few American countries. This year the bullfight is taking place from July 5 to July 13, 2014 in Pamplona, Spain. Though the critics call this the blood sport, the supporters say that it is culturally most important tradition. It is a developed form of art that is equivalent to dancing, learning music and painting. It is very enjoyable and lively occasion. And as I always say that any occasion or fest is incomplete without food, let’s throw light on what Spanish people love to eat and drink.

Spanish Omelette

Spanish Omelette

Spain is one of the largest producers of good quality of wine and hence it is an important part of dining. Traditional drinks include:-

  • Sangria(mixture of wine, brandy, juice and fruits)

  • tinto de verano (mixture of red wine with lemonade)

  • Rioja wine (typical red wine)

  • Cava wine (sparkling wine)

  • Licor 43 or Cuarenta Y(wine made up of 43 ingredients)

Sangria

Sangria

Traditional Spanish Omelette is AKA tortilla española or tortilla de patatas. It is very different from French omelette. Basic Spanish omelette is made up of eggs and potatoes only. The recipes has number of variations and I am gonna present a variant recipe to you. This dish is paired with bread. It is accompanied by fried pimientos de padron. Padron peppers are small, bright green peppers. These peppers are fried and sprinkled with sea salt. In some places, it is also served with bocadillo or bocata. Bocadillo is a popular Spanish sandwich.

Ingredients:-

6 Eggs,

1/3 Cup milk,

4 Rashers bacon,

1 sliced Red onion,

1 sliced Green onion,

1 tablespoon Olive oil,

2 crushed Garlic cloves,

1 teaspoon Sweet paprika,

2 medium sliced Sebago potatoes,

1 medium chopped Red capsicum,

1/4 Cup finely grated parmesan cheese,

2 tablespoons chopped Flat-leaf parsley leaves.

Preparation Method:-

1. Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and bacon. Cook for 6 minutes. Add potato, capsicum, parsley and paprika. Stir occasionally, for 4 minutes or until potatoes are soft.

2. Preheat grill on medium. Whisk eggs, milk and parmesan together in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Now pour egg mixture evenly over potato mixture. Tilt the pan to distribute egg mixture evenly. Set on low heat. Cook for 8 minutes.

3. Now place it under grill. Cook for 5 minutes. Set aside for 2 minutes. Use a spatula and turn onto a plate. Cut into wedges. Serve with bread.

Bullfight

Bullfight

Enjoy the treat!