Porron Wine Pitcher

Make next Friday, April 13th your lucky day by visiting Paris-Madrid Grocery.  Josep Almirall from Mont-Marçal Vinícola will be in our shop, pouring tastes of Spanish cava, from 11 AM – 1 PM.  (The tasting will continue after Josep departs until the samples run out).   In Catalonia during spring festivals, sparkling wines are often drunk from a porron and served with calçots and romesco.  We do have porrons and romesco sauce in stock, and we have a recipe below for calçots and romesco sauce, should you wish to create your own festival.

santa fe ole chile sauces

Sometimes it’s better just to buy a jar of something, rather than make it yourself.  A case in point is chile sauces.   You can make your own sauce each fall by purchasing fresh peppers and roasting them.   Sometimes you can even buy fresh roasted peppers at farmer’s markets.   Then you peel and chop the peppers, add seasonings and freeze the sauce for a future meal.   Or, you can come here and spend $8.99 for a 16 oz jar of Santa Fe Olé red or green chile sauce from peppers grown in Hatch, N.M.   Hatch green chiles look like Anaheims but are famed for their intense flavor.  Slightly smoky when green, they develop a sweeter, earthier flavor as they ripen and turn red.   We’ve now got Hatch green chile sauce in mild, medium or hot and also medium red chile sauce.   Having just returned from New Mexico where we ate red and green chile sauces on burgers, rib-eyes, huevos rancheros, posole and more, we made a point to bring in some products for our shelves.   These sauces are a must-have for their intense flavor and will perk up any ordinary dish.    Fantastic on pork, white fish, prawns, chicken, enchiladas, carne asada tacos, almost anything!

truffle sheep milk cheeseQueso Oveja con Trufa Negra NEW!   Pasteurized Sheep’s milk cheese with Black Truffle from La Mancha – Wow!  What a great flavor combination.  Aged 5 months, this mild and buttery cheese has a creamy texture and a delicate accent of truffle.   Perfect balance of flavors.

Rabitos – If you are a fan of dark chocolate and figs, you’ll soon become addicted to these bite-sized confections.  A fig stuffed with chocolate brandy ganache, then dipped in dark chocolate, one or two make a great mid-afternoon pick-me-up.   An excellent dessert, take it up a notch by serving them with a glass of Lustau East India sherry or tawny port.

Torres Spanish potato chipsTorres brand Spanish potato chips, in Olive oil and sea salt, Jamon flavored and Truffle flavored –  These are the Cadillac of potato chips!  Thinly sliced, they are fried in extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt.   The ultimate treat with a tuna fish sandwich.

Marques de Priego Extra Virgin Olive Oil  – Produced in the mountainous Subbéticas Natural Park in Priego de Cordoba, an area renown for top olive oils.  Biodynamic and unfiltered, it is a combination of Picuda, Picual and Hojiblanca varieties which give the oil a leafy and herbal flavor.  Subtle tones of mature fruits such as apple with an aftertaste of almond make this an excellent drizzling oil.
Dried Pocha beans  – Small and mild, these beans are typically served with steamed clams.
Tetilla, San Simon, Monte Enebro, Payoya, and individually sized Camembert cheeses are all back in stock.

barbadillo castillo de San DiegoBarbadillo Castillo de San Diego Palomino Fina 2017, Cadiz ($6.99).    We’ve missed having this wine on the shelf, and now it’s finally back.   The ultimate value wine, it’s an unoaked white that is fresh and bright.   Made from the grape that is used to make sherry, it oxidizes easily and is difficult to vinify.   Barbadillo was the first bodega to make a table wine out of this grape and they now sell millions of bottles every year in Andalucia.   It’s a great aperitif wine, with its crisp, clean and slightly fruity notes.   Excellent with seafood or cheese, and at this price, it’s a perfect wedding wine.

Bertrand Ambroise Bourgogne BlancMaison Ambroise Bourgogne Chardonnay 2014 ($19.99)  Vinified in stainless steel and certified organic, from a family-run estate dating back to the late 1600’s.  100% Chardonnay aged in neutral tank.  This rich and buttery white wine is round on the palate with hints of white orchard fruit.  With underlying dusty notes and a crisp finish, this is a tasty sipping wine which also pairs well with shellfish.

Chateau La Rame rougeChateau La Rame Bordeaux Rouge 2015 ($17.99)  50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 50% Merlot from 35-year-old vines.  Fermented with indigenous yeast and aged for 18 months with 10% aged in neutral oak barrel.   This entry-level red from Chateau La Rame offers up juicy fruit aromas.    Red cherry fruit with an earthy touch of green pepper shows a mineral-laden texture on the palate.  Generous on the palate, it is bright, supple and silky.  This wine pairs well with beef and even better with steak and green chile sauce.

Chateau La Rame La CharmilleChateau La Rame Cadillac “La Charmille” Cotes de Bordeaux 2015 ($24.99)   50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 50% Merlot, from 35-45-year-old vines grown in a 6-hectare hillside vineyard.  Fermented with indigenous yeast, and aged for 18 months (30% in new oak barrels).   “La Charmille” is a gorgeous red, offering up structure and seriousness in a juicy robe of fruit.   Oaky notes are well integrated with ripe red tree fruits and mature tannins.   Leafy tobacco, spice and road tar mingle on the expansive palate.   The finish is lengthy and elegant.


CALCÓTS WITH ROMESCO SAUCE  From The Spanish Table Cookbook
Romesco is a Catalan sauce of tomatoes, red ñora peppers, garlic, and almonds with stale bread as a thickener. Romesco is served in the spring in Catalonia with calçots, charred over an open fire. Calçots are onions, which have stayed in the ground over the winter and have re-sprouted. The closest substitute is a bunch of large green onions. Employ your imagination using Romesco sauce, pairing it with grilled fresh green asparagus, prawns, salmon or even cooked beets.  It is one of those sauces of infinite variation with every cook having different proportions and variations on the ingredients.    Find Ñora peppers, Marcona almonds and olive oil at Paris Madrid Grocery.

calcots and romesco sauce4-5                      Ñora peppers, re-hydrated with boiling water
2 tablespoon      Olive oil for frying
1 slice (½ cup)   Stale Bread
1 clove               Garlic, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon         Coarse sea salt
¼ cup                 Marcona Almonds
1                         Roma Tomato, peeled and seeded.  (Roasting the tomato adds depth).
4 tablespoon      Reserved liquid from ñoras
2 tablespoons    Extra Virgin Olive Oil  (if needed)

Cover ñoras with boiling water and allow to steep for half an hour.
Reserving the liquid, remove stems and seeds saving flesh and skin.
Fry nuts in olive oil until brown, remove with slotted spoon.
Fry bread in olive oil adding more if needed.
Put garlic and salt in a mortar and blend together with a pestle or put them in food processor and give it a couple of bursts.
Add cooled nuts with bread and grind.
Add ñora and blend in.
If using tomato, blend it in now.
If sauce is too thick, add a splash of extra virgin olive oil.

As with all sauces, running this sauce through a food mill gives a smoother, more sophisticated product.