Olives, Piquillo peppers and Manchego cheese croquetas
50 g butter
½ small Spanish onion, finely chopped
100g of pitted green olives
50g of Manchego cheese
6 piquillo peppers
800 ml full-fat milk
60 g plain flour, plus extra for rolling
pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1 tb sp salt
pinch of ground white pepper (ground black pepper will also do)
50 g breadcrumbs
vegetable oil for deep-frying
Melt the butter in a pan over a medium heat and add the chopped onion. Cook for a few minutes until the onion turns translucent but not coloured. Meanwhile, in a separate pan, bring the milk almost to boiling point and then set aside.
Add the flour to the onion and cook for 5 minutes, stirring, until the flour has toasted a bit. Add the hot milk little by little, whisking all the time, to make a thick roux. Keep going until you have added all the milk and you have a smooth and silky béchamel. When it comes back to the boil reduce the heat to low and add the whole peppers, the olives, the Manchego cheese, nutmeg and salt and pepper. Briefly blix using a hand blender but making sure all the ingredients still a bit coarse and don’t become a smooth puree. Leave to simmer for about 30 minutes, whisking to make sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
Line the bottom of a baking tray with baking parchment and then pour the béchamel into the baking tray. Spread it out and let it cool for a few minutes and then place a layer of clingfilm directly on top, making sure the clingflim is touching the surface of the béchamel as this will stop a skin from form. Transfer to the fridge to chill completely.
After 2 hours the béchamel should be firm enough to handle. Turn the béchamel out on to a floured surface and carefully peel away the baking parchment. Sprinkle with a little more flour and use a knife to cut the béchamel into strips and then small squares, about 4 cm square. Dust your hands with flour and roll these little squares into balls between your hands.
Beat the egg in a bowl and spread the breadcrumbs out on a plate. Dip each ball in the egg and then roll in the breadcrumbs before placing on a clean plate. You can chill these in the fridge at this point, if you want to cook them later.
Heat the oil in a large deep pan until it reaches 180°C. If you don’t have a thermometer you can check if the oil is ready by dropping a small square of bread into the oil – it should turn golden in about 30 seconds. Fry the croquetas in small batches until they are golden and crisp (this should take about 1½ minutes. Remove and drain on kitchen paper while you cook the rest.
2/3 cup (92g) green olives, pitted - drained and chopped
2/3 cup black olives, pitted - drained and chopped
4 cups (500g) bread flour
1 tsp (5g) salt
1/2 tsp (2g) garlic powder
1 tsp (1g) rosemary
1 1/2 tsp (3g) chili flakes
Fresh thyme leaves
25g fresh yeast (or 2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast)
1 1/2 cups (360ml) water
Preparation time: 1 hour
In a large bowl mix flour with salt, garlic powder, rosemary, chilli flakes and fresh thyme leaves.
Dissolve the fresh yeast in ½ cup (120ml) water and add to the flour mixture. Add the rest of 1 cup (240ml) water and start kneading the dough until pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
Add olives and knead a bit more until incorporated. Grease with olive oil a clean bowl, transfer the dough and cover with plastic wrap. Let it rest for 2.5 hours at room temperature until tripled in size.
On a floured surface flatten the dough into an oval shape and start rolling one edge inward it. Roll and turn upside down and shape it into a ball. Sprinkle flour and cornmeal over a clean towel, add the dough and cover. Let rise for another 30-45 minutes.
Meanwhile turn the oven to 470F (240C) and add a 9 inch (23cm) round iron cast pan inside without the lid. Leave it in the oven for about 30-45 minutes until the dough rise in the towel.
Remove the iron cast pan from the oven, turn the dough into the pan and put the lid on. Bake for 25-30 minutes at 470F (240C) with the lid on to create steam.
Remove the lid and bake for another 20 minutes at 440F (230C) to let the bread get some crispy golden brown crust.
700g of lamb neck fllet trimmed of fat cut into 4 even portions
Olive oil for cooking
2 butternut squash or 1.2kg mixed onion/ spaghetti squash, unpeeled and cut into thin wedges
Sea salt and pepper
1 tbsp of blossom honey
2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
1 red chilli, cut in half and seeds removed and roughly chopped
100g softened unsalted butter
100g pitted green
4 salted anchovy fillets, finely chopped
Zest and juice of 1//22 lemon
30g pickled miniature capers
GREEN OLIVE PUREE
100g pitted green Spanish Olives such as Gordal - drained
50ml fruity extra virgin olive oil
50g picked fat parsley
1 pinch chilli fakes
Place the lamb portions in a bowl and drizzle over some olive and season with salt and pepper. Leave to marinade whilst the squash is cooking.
Heat the oven to 200oc.
Place the squash pieces on a baking tray. Drizzle over some olive oil and add the chilli, garlic, 50g of the butter and a good amount of seasoning. Mix the squash through with your hands ensuring its fully coated. Place the tray in the oven and cook until the squash starts to caramelize, then turn the heat down to 160oc and continue to cook until the squash becomes tender and soft. You should turn the squash twice during this process to ensure even colouring and so that the squash doesn’t stick. When the squash is ready, drizzle with honey and reserve.
Make the puree by placing the olives, oil, chilli and parsley in a blender and whizzing to a fine puree. Season to taste and reserve at room temp.
Heat a sauté pan over a high heat and add a lug of olive oil. Place in the lamb and cook for 3 minutes on each side to caramelize and then turn the heat to medium and add the remaining butter. Cook until the butter starts to turn nut brown and then add the capers, anchovies, lemon juice and zest. Turn off the heat and leave everything to rest for 5minutes before serving. The lamb should still be nice and pink. Divide out the roast squashes and then cut the lamb into chunks, spoon over the brown butter sauce and finally add dollops of the puree.
1 shot of brandy (or dry white wine if you prefer)
Black pepper powder
2 sprigsof fresh rosemary
1 glass of water (or chicken stock)
Place a wide pan over a high heat and brown the seasoned chicken thighs with a bit of olive oil. Skin side down first as they will release a bit of fat which will help golden the chicken and for all the remaining ingredients to caramelize properly.
Once both siders of all the thighs are dark golden set them aside and start frying the thinly slice garlic and onion.
When golden add the four and stir constantly for 1 minute so the four toasts evenly and doesn’t give a doughy favour to the end dish.
Bring the chicken back into the pan, add the rosemary and pour the glass of white wine. Stir to dissolve the four properly and reduce the wine by half: to burn the alcohol and to give enough of the acidity that this dish needs.
At this point we should add the black pepper, the glass of water and the olives and braise it for around 20 minutes, till the chicken has tenderized and all the ingredients have come together in a juicy and rich sauce.
100g pitted black Spanish olives e.g Hojiblanca or Cacereña
50g tin salted anchovies, including the oil
1 tbsp salted capers
½ fresh red chilli, or to taste
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Freshly grounded black pepper
75 ml cider vinegar
75 ml raspberry vinegar
50 g caster (superfine) sugar
6 black peppercorns
4 red onions, finely sliced
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Extra virgin olive oil
4 peppers, a mix of colours
1 red onion, finely sliced
1 bulb of garlic, cloves separated
A handful of thyme sprigs
Extra virgin olive oil
A good squeeze of lemon juice
A handful of chopped fat leaf parsley
Put all the marinade ingredients in a food processor and blitz to make a paste. Don’t add any salt as there is already a lot present. Just add a few grinds of fresh pepper if you wish. Cover the meat in the paste and leave it to marinate in the fridge for a minimum of 12 hours, ideally 24 hours.
Heat the vinegars with the caster sugar and peppercorns until the sugar has dissolved. Pour the hot vinegar over the onions and set aside
To prepare the escalivada, preheat the grill to high and blacken the peppers all over. Seal in a plastic bag to steam and loosen the skins.
Preheat the oven to 160C/Gas 3. Scatter the onion in a roasting tin. Add the aubergines, garlic and thyme and toss together with a good drizzle of olive oil. Roast for 1 hour.
Remove the skin from the peppers, deseed and cut into strips. Toss into the pan with the onions and aubergine and cook for a further 15-20 minutes until the aubergine is really tender.
Allow the aubergine to cool a little, then cut into strips and toss with the peppers and onions. Squeeze the garlic cloves from their skins and toss with the vegetables, plenty of extra virgin olive oil, a good squeeze of lemon and the parsley. Season to taste
The best way to cook the lamb is on the grill. Place the rack of lamb on the hottest part of the grill and cook it for 3 minutes. Turn the rack of lamb over and cook it for an additional 3 minutes on the other side.
Move the lamb to the edge of the grill with the thickest portion closest to the direct heat. Cook the lamb for 10 minutes on each side for medium rare meat, 15 minutes for medium.
Remove the rack of lamb from the grill and transfer it to a large serving platter. Allow the lamb to rest at room temperature for 10 minutes before slicing and serving it so the natural juices can redistribute throughout the meat.