Archive for July, 2022

Just before we left for Spain, I bought the cutest little loaf pan with the sharpest corners but I didn’t have enough time to try it so it was tucked away until our return at the end of May. I was paging through the Early Summer Edition of the LCBO Food and Drink Magazine when I spotted this cornbread recipe. And the ingredients were easy to half plus I had just enough of the ingredients (like only one egg)!

I have visions of baking nutty crackers in this adorable pan.

Bacon and onions, are a delicious combination.

Bacon and Green Onion Cornbread

Makes about 1 small loaf pan, 75 cm x 180 cm (3 inches x 7 inches)


  • 105 g yellow cornmeal
  • 86 g All-purpose flour
  • 25 g granulated sugar
  • 10 mL baking powder
  • 2 mL baking soda
  • 5 mL fine sea salt
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 188 mL kefir, well shaken
  • 57 g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 15 g green onions, finely chopped
  • 30 g bacon, well cooked and coarsely chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a small loaf pan with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder and soda, and sea salt and whisk well.
  3. In another bowl, combine the egg, kefir, melted butter, green onions, and bacon, and whisk to combine.
  4. Pour the wet into the dry ingredients and mix just to combine, it will be lumpy.
  5. Tap the pan to remove air bubbles and smooth out the top.
  6. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean.

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During our final week in Spain, we came across this gem, not more than 30 minutes from San José. It is Michelin rated, not starred…yet. We had a wonderful plein air lunch in a shady and breezy spot on their terrace. I would definitely go back.

Our table was the one on the far right

The restaurant view

The view from our table

Unfortunately, I took a bite before I remembered to take a photo.

I was on a roll because I totally forgot to take this photo so I just borrowed it from the website.

Asador La Chumbera: Grilled Octopus

The wine cooler


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Upon our return from Spain, I was missing being there so I made the Almond Tuiles of Sevilla (Tejas Dulces de Sevilla). They are delicious but it got me thinking about a savoury version. We had brought home some wonderful cheese called Old Amsterdam and I thought it would make a delicious snack. They are light and airy and crisp. They are strong enough for dip, but tasty on their own. I love how rustic they look from just breaking them apart.

Savoury Cheese Tuiles

Makes about 20 cm x 30 cm sheet


  • 1 egg
  • 30 g cheese (I used Old Amsterdam)
  • 1 g salt
  • 1 g smoked paprika 
  • 50 g flour 


  1. Beat the egg until it reaches the ribbon stage (about 5 minutes), add the salt and smoked paprika and mix well, then fold in the flour.
  2. Spread evenly on a parchment-lined baking sheet and sprinkle the cheese over it evenly and bake at 275° F for 20-35 minutes or until it has totally dried out and developed a golden colour.
  3. Cool entirely and once cool break into shards. Serve at room temperature.



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One of our most memorable meals in Spain was at the beautiful One Star Michelin restaurant in Retama Restaurant within La Caminera Hotel. We should have stayed at the hotel, but we had already booked something in Valdepeñas, a short drive away. We chose The Traditional menu, without wine pairings (I react poorly to some heavier reds and whites aged in oak casks).

As part of a course, we were served a wonderful little bite of Atascaburras, a typical dish of the La Mancha Region. The story goes that two shepherds and their donkeys were isolated after a big snowfall, with only salt cod, potatoes, garlic, and olive oil at hand, and in their desperation, they created this dish to feed themselves and their donkeys over several days until they were rescued. This dish is often eaten during a snowfall and it is said that the water to boil the potatoes and cod in should be freshly fallen snow. Obviously, there was no snow in sight but the story and delicious flavour of these little cod fritters were definitely calling to me. They called them fritters in the restaurant but they were not deep-fried, I suspect the chef used a Takoyaki pan to sear the small balls. We were served one each. Traditionally, this dish is usually served on a platter with bread or crackers. Since I don’t have a Takoyaki pan, I chose to serve it as a dip. In modern times, a boiled egg is used to garnish the dip but it was not traditional. I chose to use a hard-boiled egg yolk, grated on top of the dish as a garnish.

The atascaburras was served as a round ‘fritter’


Makes about 500 mL dip


  • 300 g potato (I used Yukon Gold)
  • 300 g salt cod, soaked and rinsed several times over 48 hours
  • 130 mL olive oil
  • 1/2 clove of garlic, finely minced
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 egg yolk, hard-boiled
  • Red pepper oil


  1. Cook the cleaned but unpeeled potato in water for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, add the prepared salt cod and cook an additional 10 minutes. Reserve the water.
  2. Add both the cod, potato and garlic to a blender (I used a magic bullet because it really emulsifies beautifully). Add the olive oil and emulsify, adding a little of the reserved water to make a smooth, creamy dip. Taste and salt if necessary.
  3. Place in an oven for 15-20 minutes on 250° F to just warm up. Serve in a low-sided dish with grated egg yolk as garnish and sprinkled with a little red pepper oil.

No, that is not cheese, it’s grated hard-boiled egg yolk.

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