Last night Diane made us a wonderful Spanish meal. She began with the Spanish version of Italian bruschetta but this Spanish version is considerably simpler than the commercial one asvailable around the world today. This Spanish version starts with toasted bread rolls, which are then rubbed with a halved garlic clove and then rubbed with a halved tomato or in Diane’s version halved cherry tomatoes that were then left on the bread. I have read hat the Italians have a very similar version using their own crusty bread.
The second course was a real winner: green beans with chopped tomatoes, chives and pine nuts. The beans were parboiled very gently so that they were, importantly, still crunchy.
For the main course she BBQed a chicken half; I took my favourite, the thigh while Di took her favourite, the breast. She had marinated the chicken in the same marinade but with new ingredients, that I had used with the Mexican chicken several nights ago. This time, keeping to the Spanish theme, she made a delicious romesco sauce which is really Catalan in origin.
The sauce is composed of ground toasted almonds, sweet peppers, garlic and bread crumbs to which olive oil is added as the liquid. There are many variations but these are considered the standard ingredients. It is a versatile sauce that can be used with fish, chicken or lamb.
Accompanying this marvelous Spanish meal was a equally marvelous Spanish wine: a Proximo by Marques de Riscal from Rioja, 2009. A wine that fights far above its weight (or price if you prefer).