Innovative Gourmet Flavor Combinations

Welcome! I've always enjoyed unusual flavor combinations. I am committed to continuing this pleasure, while eating healthy. I hope this blog will allow me to share ideas for eating healthy without losing the excitement of innovative recipes.

I am a follower of the diet plan of Dr. Eric Berg, which in my case means gluten-free, alkaline, low-fat; my health and figure have improved vastly with this. This also fits with raw-food, vegetarian, and Weston Price (nutrient-dense), D'Adamo's Eat Right For Your Type, the Perricone Weightloss Diet, and the proportions follow Barry Sears's 40-30-30 Zone Diet. Organic, ecologic, and local-eating are also guiding principles. (Interesting how they all overlap.)

But looking around the Net, and in books, a lot of what's offered for "gluten-free" eating is versions of baked goods, and imitations of wheat dishes like pizza and burritos. You won't find that here. This site will present a complete re-thinking of how to be "gluten-free".

And followers of chef Michael Roberts and khymos, as well as lovers of Japanese creativeness (as in Iron Chef) should also find gourmet ideas here. The recipes will not just echo American cooking, but present new combinations.

Some of the reasons for this way of eating are: autism, perhaps aspergers, "celiac disease", obesity, perhaps cancer and who knows what else. You won't find the word "disease" used here though. As D'Adamo explains, a large part of the world's population (mostly with "O-blood type") never got the genes to adapt to eating the new foods of wheat, etc that came into the diet during the Neolithic. So don't call it a disease! We are actually an older human type. We're not sick; we just don't have that new-fangled adaption that some folks have. And looking into traditional diets shows that much of the world did not have wheat until very recently, and got along just fine. I know I'm eating quite well. I don't miss gluten at all.

Enough! Welcome to my kitchen . . .

Monday, June 22, 2009

Spanish special

I recently ate at a new-ish restaurant, Barlata, which specializes in Spanish dishes. The tastes were fabulous.

I had the three gazpachos: salmorejo/ ajoblanco & gazpacho, which were brought in small tall glasses.

Then the seafood paella, which was split with my friend.

Almost too full already, we decided to split one more dish, and it turned out to be delicious: lata de chipirones. which is baby squid stuffed with fennel sausage ink sauce, cooked in a tin.

And we finished by splitting the Crema de Carajillo: espresso custard with brandy foam and white chocolate churrito

Amazing tastes! I will be going back, as there was more on the menu that was new and interesting

My mother used to make Squid en su Tinta, so I've always liked it, although I hadn't had it in ages, but adding fennel sausage was a new and delicious combination. So in honor of this great meal, here is a recipe. I know, it sounds gross to most Americans, but the taste is earthy, just slightly salty, and not at all gross, just a good compliment to the squid. Well, if you aren't interested in unusual tastes, don't bother reading this blog.

Calamares en su Tinta - SQUID IN ITS OWN INK

Serves 4 to 6

3 pounds small fresh whole squid with ink sacs

1 cup finely chopped onions

1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic (i.e. 1 large clove or more)

1/4 cup finely chopped parsley - fresh would be very nice

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg, preferably treshly grated (YES!)

salt and black pepper

bay leaf

maybe tomatoes, but be careful not to overwhelm the taste

Clean the squid (that's another whole technique beyond this entry), reserving the ink sacs in a small fine sieve set over a bowl. (You may be able to get your fish counter to do some of this for you.)

Dip the squid in salt and flour (for gluten-free, use rice flour). I think you could leave this step out.

Stir-fry quickly in olive oil over high heat: squid, onions, garlic and parsley for 5 or 6 minutes, stirring. Add seasonings, reduce the heat to low, cover the skillet, and simmer for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, mash the ink sacs in the sieve with the back of a spoon and press out as much of the ink as possible. Pour the water over the sacs and mash again to extract any remaining ink. With a whisk beat the flour into the ink and continue to beat until smooth. One recipe adds 1 glass of white wine at this point, which sounds like it would be very good.

Pour the ink over the squid mixture and, stirring constantly, bring to a boil over high heat. Immediately reduce the heat to its lowest point, cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and, without removing the cover, let the squid rest for about 5 minutes before serving. 

Nice over rice, unseasoned, as a balance to the rich taste of the sauce and seasonings.

No comments:

Post a Comment