From Cordoba to Cadiz, Spain – Salmorejo and Salpicon!

Salmorejo 6 Salmorejo4

Salpicon2 Salpicon 6

Salmorejo is a typical dish from Cordoba, Spain. I first tried it when I visited Cordoba, almost 3 years ago now. Outside the sacred  site, Mezquita de Cordoba, is Casa Santos were they are famous for their big Spanish omelettes (tortilla).  I was truly there for the omelette, and the gods were on my side as fortunately my gigantic slice of tortilla came with a side dish called Salmorejo. I was grateful to have tried this honest generous dish. Created during hard times when produce was scarce. So don’t waste that slightly stale bread,

save it for your Salmorejo. It’s like gazpacho only thicker. It is more of a dip than a soup and in Cordoba, generally eaten by dipping bread or dry bread sticks, topped with dices of egg and Jamon Iberico. You are given the chance to also scoop it with a spoon. So with such fond memories of Cordoba I had to make this recipe today. A great one for Spring and Summer too!

Salpicon de Maricos (Shellfish Vinaigrette) is another great Spring or Summer recipe which is said to come from a port in southwestern Spain, Cadiz. Salpicon is a truly refreshing mixture and a treat when you can get a hold of fresh shellfish in Spring or Summer. You can play around with the recipe depending on what’s available from your local fish monger. The absolute key to this dish is not to overcook the fish.

Salmorejo Recipe (serves 2)

  • 3 medium plum tomatoes
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 150 grams of white crusty bread
  • 1 hard boiled egg diced
  • 80g of Jamon Iberico or Serrano will do
  • 4 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 tsp of red vinegar
  • 1 tbsp of salt

Salpicon de Mariscos (serves 2)

  • Salt
  • 1/2 lemon, sliced
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 1 bay leaf
  • a few fresh parsley stalks
  • 5 peppercorns
  • 350g of fresh prawns with shells on
  • 350g of fresh squid, cleaned and cut into rings, leaving tentacles whole
  • 250g of mussels, steamed and removed from their shells

for the Vinaigrette

  • 1 green capsicum, finely diced
  • 2 tomatoes, finely diced
  • 2 tbsp of capers, rinsed
  • 2 tbsp of onions, very finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp of chopped parsley

Tips

For the Salpicon make sure to begin by boiling a large saucepan with salted water, lemon slices, onion, bay leaf, parsley stalks and peppercorns. Throw in the prawns and as soon as they turn pink (which should not take more than 1 minute) remove them and throw them into a bath of cold water. Remove their heads, peel them and gently discard the black thread that runs down their back. Bring the pan back to the boil, throw in the squid for just a few seconds unless you like rubber! Pull them out into the bath of cold water to chill. Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl, cover and leave to sit in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours!

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