For the sachet, wrap all ingredients in cheesecloth and tie with twine
Heat the water, sugar, and vinegar to a boil and then pour over the rest of the ingredients. Store overnight. Then separate the sachet and discard. Reserve the pickles for service.
Cut the peppers in half length wise, and de-seed. With skin side down, trim the peppers by shaving off as much of the pepper as possible from the seed side/inside. Discarding all the ‘juicy’ part, and leaving a thin, mostly skin pepper. Slice the peppers very thin, into juliens as thin as possible. Place them in ice water and allow to chill for one hour. They should curl very tightly into nice shapes. Reserve for service, as garnish.
Saffron rice chip
Rinse the rice, and then bring to a boil in the measured amount of water. Reduce to medium heat then cook in a pot with the saffron and salt, covered for 30 minutes or until fully tender.
Transfer in small batches to a vitamix or high speed blender, a thermomix would work very well. Add a small amount of boiling water just enough to help the rice mix, and blend on high for 3 minutes each batch, until the rice is fully smooth and pureed. Transfer all the finished rice puree to a non-stick sautee pan.
Cook on low heat for 20-30 minutes, stirring frequently with a rubber spatula until very thick and dry. Do not allow it to get on the edges of the pan or it will dry and you will get solids in your rice puree. Once you have thickened the puree, spread on to a silpat or silicone mat. Acetate paper would work as well. Then dehydrate in an oven or commercial dehydrator at 120 degrees Fahrenheit for 2-3 hours, until fully dry and crispy. Fry at 350 degrees F until puffed and crispy, then dry on a paper towel and season while hot with salt. Break the chips into small 2 bite size pieces and reserve for service.
Sweat garlic and shallots in the olive oil from Spain, then add the scallop trim. Cook on low heat, slowly caramelizing. Cook for 8 hours, on a diffuser or very low heat, adding water as necessary to ensure it doesn’t burn but just slowly caramelizes. Once it is dark, and rich in flavor and color, puree completely smooth in a vitamix blender. Once smooth, pop the air out of the puree in a cryovac machine.
Transfer to a squeeze bottle or piping bag. Fill all your cleaned, brined mussels escabeche with the sofrito and reserve
Heat wine to a boil, then add cleaned mussels into the pot and cover with a lid. Cook until all mussels are cooked and opened fully. Drain into a perforated pan and cool in the refrigerator. Once cool, open the mussels and trim all of the gills and excess anatomy out to make room for the sofrito filling.
For preparation, add all ingredients of set 1 to a container, other than the water. Separately heat the water to a full boil and pour over the ingredients of set 1 and let it steep tasting frequently for about 5 minutes, making sure it doesn’t get too spicy. Then strain through a fine mesh sieve.
Pour the liquid from set 1, previously steeped, over the ingredients of set 2 and let steep in the refrigerator overnight. Then take this liquid and pour over your cleaned, shucked, steamed mussels. Then topping with Spanish extra virgin olive oil to cover, and reserve in the refrigerator overnight to marinade.
Building the tapa, and cilantro leaf garnish
As needed cilantro leaves, the small, perfect leaves, picked from the bunch
To build the tapa, have all ingredients from the included recipes completed to perfection and ready for service.
Start with the saffron chip, as your base. Next add your mussels escabeche, that are stuffed with the scallop sofrito. About two per tapa are good, depending on size. Next add your pickled shallots and garlic, in a ratio of about 2 shallot and 1 garlic per mussel, depending on size. Next garnish with your beautiful red fresno pepper curls. Finally garnish with the fresh cilantro leaves, adding a beautiful green to our tapa. Serve on a bowl or dish of your choosing, I recommend something with a rice or grain as the base to help stabilize the tapa.
“Mediterráneo”, participant tapa in the City of Valladolid World Tapas Championship, prepared by John Carney from the Olive & Hay Restaurant (United States).
Tapa prepared by Eva María Galiano from La Teja Restaurant (Valladolid)
For the pickled veg:
30g shallot, sliced thin
30g garlic, sliced thin
200g champagne vinegar, or white wine vinegar
10g coriander seed in a sachet
10g peppercorn in a sachet
10g basil in a sachet
5g thyme in a sachet
For the pepper curls
2 ea fresno chili peppers as needed
Saffron rice chip
300g white rice, arborio or bomba preferred
Separately, for the end: As needed boiling water
1 lb mussels, cleaned and de-bearded
100g white wine for steaming
500g scallop trim, fresh sweet scallops are best
50g shallots sliced thin
50g garlic, sliced thin
50g extra virgin olive oil from Spain
As needed salt
125g champagne or white wine vinegar
75g fennel, sliced thinly
75g onion, sliced thinly
15g parsley stems
5g thai chili
10g orange zest
19g garlic, chopped thin
1 g saffron
70 g lemon, sliced thin
30 g salt
5 g fennel sliced thin
As needed, extra virgin olive oil from Spain
Delicious recipes made with olive oils from Spain.