Mushroom croquettes

Its International Croquette Day!

Hola holaaa!

Croquetas (croquettes), I love them, any kind. It is very common in Spain to order croquetas in a tapas bar. Spain has a lot of different kinds of croquetas; with chicken, or ham, cheese, meat, seafood, mushrooms, etc, etc. I’ll definitely make all of them for you:)     Or I’ll try to 😉

I love mushrooms, and there are so many different varieties. Mushrooms are great for sauces, sides, pastas… I like to get my mushrooms at the farmers market. So fresh and so good.

For this recipe, it doesn’t really matter which kind of mushroom you use. I would recommend just using your favorite kind of mushroom. I like shiitake mushrooms so, those are the ones I used for this recipe.

The recipe is almost the same as the one for Chicken croquetas

Ingredients for 20 croquetas:

– About 5 ounces of mushroom (about a pint)

– 1 small onion

– 1/2 cup milk…

View original post 344 more words

Coulant de chocolate

Hola hola!!

The countdown to Christmas is here. I recently returned to Spain to celebrate the holidays with my family. It’s great to be back, but I would skip the 8 hour plane ride if I could… It’s not that bad though. I do enjoy flying and it goes by fast enough that I barely sleep. I really look forward to seeing all of my family. Let’s see if I can cook with my grandma and post some recipes.

I apologize If I don’t post for a while, but I’m not sure how much time I’ll have. I will do my best. If you are on Facebook or Instagram, I will definitely post some local and traditional Spanish food there.

For today, I made something very “chocolatey”. It is called Coulant de Chocolate. I used to make it a lot back in college with one of my friends. The beauty…

View original post 207 more words

Peppers del Padrón

Holaaa and Happy New Year!!!!

I hope you all had a great holiday and a great beginning to 2017!

I went to Spain for Christmas and while there, I had a popular tapa called  Peppers al Padrón, “Pimientos del Padrón” in Spanish. The peppers are from El Padrón, a town in the northwest region of Galicia.

When I came back to the States I went to the supermarket and I saw something similar, so I immediately thought that I would have to post them on the blog. It’s a very easy tapa to make and really tasty.

These peppers are small, about 3 inches long and green in color. They have a mild flavor, not too hot, not too sweet. You will find them in the markets mostly between May and October.

I think it will be difficult to locate these peppers in the USA, but probably not impossible.  The peppers I purchased are a similar size, and have a similar flavor, though probably a little sweeter. That’s not a bad thing. The important aspects are the size and overall flavor. Since they are served as a tapa, they should be bite-sized. The way to eat them is just picking them up by the stem and eating them whole. (Everything but the stem!) And the flavor. In general, most of the small peppers I find in the US are chili peppers. These tend to be too hot and spicy for this dish.





The best way to cook them is to sauté them in a pan with olive oil and salt.

You might think that they look burned, but they are not, just the way you want them to look.


The substitute peppers! Very colorful.

It is a very popular tapa in Spain, so… let’s do it!


–  1/2 Ib Sweet peppers (or as many as you want!)

– olive oil

– Sea salt (I used Maldon)

Heat a large skillet/pan over medium high heat. Add a generous amount of olive oil and when it’s hot, add the peppers. If the pan is not big enough for all of the peppers, you can cook them in batches. Stir the peppers until they are coated in olive oil. Cook until the skins are blistered, slightly charred, and the texture starts to soften. Add the sea salt and ready to serve! Another classic tapa, easy to prepare, and a great way to incorporate some delicious veggies into your meal.

Pimientos del Padrón

Bon profit!

Croquetas de Chickpeas


I love croquettes. As you can see on my blog, I already have several different varieties of croquetas (croquettes). In Spain, they are very popular. They make a great dinner component for kids and also a great tapa or appetizer. The most popular variety are chicken croquetas. Like a lot of Spaniards, I love finger food, and these croquetas are so yummy that I couldn’t stop eating them.

The variety of croquetas that I made today are Chickpeas (Garbanzo beans) Croquettes, translated to Croquetas de Garbanzos. If you are a fan of hummus, I bet (and hope!) you will love these croquetas. The recipe is really easy to execute.

Ingredients for 30 croquetas:

  • 1 can Chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  •  3/4 cup milk (2% or whole milk)
  • nutmeg
  • 2-3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 egg
  • flour
  • bread crumbs
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup canola oil for frying the croquetas

– Blend the chickpeas in a food processor and set aside.

-Cook the onion on medium heat with some olive oil until it turns golden brown. Season with salt and pepper.

-Once the onion starts to brown, start preparing the white sauce.

-Add 2 tablespoons of butter to a medium pan and place on low heat.  The bottom of the pan should be entirely coated with butter. Once it’s melted, add 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour.  Stir constantly until the flour is brown. Add 1/2 cup of milk and stir until everything has been incorporated (it should like like a béchamel/white sauce). If it looks too thick, add a little bit of milk. Too thin, keep stirring or add a little flour.

-Place the chickpeas and the onion into the sauce and stir. Add a small pinch of nutmeg (it has a lot of flavor!). Keep stirring, you want all the ingredients to be fully mixed. By now, the dough shouldn’t be liquid, if you see that it is too wet, add an extra tablespoon of flour. On the other hand, If the dough is too dry, add a little milk. You don’t want it too wet because it will be impossible to form the croquetas.

-The mixture should rest a minimum of 2 hours, or overnight.

– After the dough has rested, prepare the egg mixture. For this, I beat one egg.

– Next, prepare your bread crumbs.  Pour the bread crumbs onto a large plate. Store bought bread crumbs are fine for this.

– Shape the mixture into small croquetas with a small spoon.

-Dip the croquetas into the beaten egg and then roll each croqueta in the bread crumbs.

– Fry the croquetas. It takes about 2-3 minutes per side.

-Remove the croquetas and let them rest on a paper towel to cool and remove excess oil.


Delicious! Serve warm and… BON PROFIT!

Leche Merengada


It´s pretty warm out here, it´s still summer in Maryland! When it’s this warm, I really like to have some refreshing cold drinks in the refrigerator; lemonade, ice tea… When I’m in Spain, I like to have a cold drink called leche merengada. The literal translation is meringue milk. It is common to find it in the ice cream shops during the summer months.

This drink became very popular in Madrid at the end of the XVIII century. Some of the classic Spanish literature novels such as Fortunata y Jacinta by Benito Perez talk about the drink. There is also a very famous children’s song that talks about the cow and the leche merengada:

Tengo una vaca lechera
No es una vaca cualquiera
Me da leche merengada
¡Hay que vaca tan salada!
Tolón, tolón

I translated it in English;

I have a dairy cow
It’s no ordinary cow,
It gives me meringue milk.
Oh! What a nice cow!
Tolon, tolon. (No translation! Just a silly saying)

The drink is the easiest ever to make. It is sweetened milk sprinkled with cinnamon and topped with whipped white egg.  Sounds good right?! Everyone likes it, kids and adults. So let’s get into the recipe!

Hands on; 15 minutes – Total time: 2 hours


– 4 cups milk

– 1/2 – 3/4 cup of sugar (depending on how much of a sweet tooth you have)

– 1 large stick cinnamon

– powdered cinnamon (just a pinch to sprinkle on the top)

– 1/4 lemon peel

– 2 egg whites

In a sauce pan, mix the milk, sugar, lemon peel and cinnamon stick over medium heat. Stir constantly until it just boils, then turn off the heat. Remove the lemon peel and cinnamon stick, then pour the mixture into a bowl. Let it cool at room temperature and then place it into the freezer for a couple of hours. You just want it to be very cold to serve, not frozen. (You can make it at night for the next day. Instead of placing it in the freezer, place it into the refrigerator). In a separate bowl, whip the 2 egg whites into a meringue. Until the egg whites thicken and get light and airy. Pour the whipped egg whites into the icy cold milk mixture and stir. I like to sprinkle a little bit of cinnamon on top of the drink. Ready to serve!

Yuuuuummm!! I love it!

Bon profit!

Leche merengada

Leche merengada

Puff Pastry Pizza with Garden Tomatoes


Hola from Barcelona! I am nervous,  very nervous. My wedding is right around he corner. (I’ll post some pictures on Instagram). Yay! I can´t wait, but at the same time I have tons of butterflies in my stomach everyday. I guess it’s natural.

Everyone tells me not to worry, that everything will be fine. Yes, yes…. but when it’s your own wedding, you worry about everything, or at least I do. I had to plan everything from overseas. Thank goodness I have a super mom that helped me a lot with everything. For those that are married, did you have the same feeling on the days before your wedding? I guess so.

Anyway, lets focus on the food. Those summer tomatoes are starting to roll in, more every day. For today, I made a simple and quick Puff Pastry Pizza with Garden Tomatoes. The puff pastry can be either homemade or from the store. I needed something quick today , so store-bought it was! This is a quick recipe that can help you if you have guests at the last minute or you just want to make a simple and quick dinner, appetizer or snack.


  • 1 sheet puff pastry
  • 2 tablespoons of Dijon Mustard (gives it a nice tang)
  • 3 oz grated Cheddar cheese
  • 1 big tomato
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons oregano  (fresh is the best!)


Preheat the oven to 390 F.

Roll out the puff pastry sheet on a baking sheet. Using a fork, pinch the dough (see picture) and pre-bake it for about 3  to 5 minutes.


Remove from the oven and spread the Dijon mustard (you just want a thin coat) top it with the cheese and finally the fresh tomato slices.  Season with salt, pepper and oregano.

Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.


Serve warm and Bon Profit!


Watermelon & Feta Salad

Hi there!
It has been a while since my last post, but my wedding is right aroung the corner and I’ve been super busy with everything. I hope you can understand. I am leaving next week for Spain!
Summer is here, I can’t believe it how time flies. I love this season, and all my favorites fruit and vegetables that come with it. I have four blueberry bushes at my house and I will be picking berries very soon. (If the birds don’t get to them first…) I have been sourcing them in the mean time from a local farm.
Something that I really like to eat in the summer is watermelon. (I’m growing those too!) So refreshing and so healthy. I love it. For today I made an easy salad of watermelon, feta and basil. My basil and mint are growing like crazy. I am pretty much eating tomato with basil everyday.
Anyways, back to the subject… regarding the watermelon… I made this easy and quick salad. It will take you less than 2 minutes to make it and trust me, it might sound a little weird, but it’s delicious.
3 cups diced watermelon
1/2 cup diced feta cheese
3 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons of chopped fresh basil
pinch of salt
Mix the watermelon, feta and basil. Pour the balsamic vinegar on top and add a pinch of salt. That’s it! Always fresh, delicious, and nutritious!
Try to use a watermelon that is very cold. It will taste better and be more refreshing, especially on of of those hot and beautiful summer days. Happy summer!
Bon profit!
I am happy to share this recipe with Fiesta Friday #125!

Spring Smoothie


I love Spring. Everything is (or should be) fresh and new. And with it, it brings all of the fruits and veggies that I love. It´s time to eat fresh and local again. Yay!  Now that we are getting into strawberry season, I thought I would start mixing in some delicious and beautifully ripe strawberries.

What better way to start the day then with a delicious smoothie. It will take you less than 10 minutes to make. Fresh fruit, veggies… Let the day begin! I love it 😉


– 4 big strawberries

– 1/2 apple

– 1 orange

– 1/2 c watermelon

– 1/2 c water (or fruit juice)

Place all the ingredients into a blender. Blend until smooth!

Bon profit! SONY DSC

Àvia´s Mussels


I’m back from the Bahamas. It was a fantastic and relaxing trip.  The food was good and the cocktails were even better! Can you believe that I had grouper (fish)  for breakfast? It was called Boil Grouper, like a fish soup. I thought it was a little weird, but that is a traditional breakfast there, and it was out of this world.

Speaking of seafood, I have a seafood recipe today and it’s from my grandma. My grandma (àvia in catalan) is always on my mind whenever I cook something. So of course, I am stealing her recipe. You can make this in less than 30 minutes. Isn’t it worth it? It is for me!

I love the broth that this recipe produces It’s so good, that I have to have some bread on hand for dipping. Spaniards in general eat a lot of bread. It’s like it were a part of the utensils:) The restaurants there will usually serve bread with olive oil (no butter for us!) I guess that’s why I like to go to Italian restaurants here in the U.S. because they normally serve extra-virgin olive oil. Oh! Speaking of restaurants, did you know that you have to pay for water in Spain?! Weird for the Americans, huh? Sometimes a glass of wine is cheaper than water…

Ok, let’s get back to the mussels. Sometimes I can go off on a tangent, the same way I talk. I talk a lot! This comes from my family. We talk a lot, and since we are a big family, we don’t know what the word a quiet conversation is, so we YELL! (Or talk very loudly. It is an animated conversation to say the least.)

Ingredients: (serves 2-4)

– 2 lbs  (1 kg) mussels

– olive oil

– salt and pepper

– water

The process is super easy and it takes about 20-30 minutes. Rinse the mussels, and scrub as necessary. You should also check for the ones that are already dead. The ones that won’t close on their own are probably dead, and should be discarded. Debeard the mussels, you don’t want any of the mussel beard in your mouth.

Once the mussels have been cleaned, place them into a large pot with a 1/4 cup of water on medium high heat. You don’t need to add much water to steam them, as the mussels are filled with their own water. Adding a little will give you more broth, which is a good thing. They should open in about 5 minutes. That is how you know they are cooked. When they are done, KEEP THE BROTH!

(This next step is optional. I like to eat the mussels on the half-shell. That is typically how we do it in Spain. Basically, just separate the two halves and discard the shell without the mussel attached. You also eat it with your hands there, not with a fork as is common here.)

Place the leftover broth remaining in the pan into a container or bowl. I use a strainer when I pour the broth to remove shells or sediment. To this, add about 2 tablespoons of olive oil, some salt and pepper and stir it.

Place the mussels in a pan and cook on medium heat. Pour the broth on top. Let them marinate for a few minutes and the mussels are ready!

Have that bread handy for dipping, you will need it!

Bon profit!!


Mozzarella Sandwiches with Tomato Jam


I love cheese! Don´t you?  When I was in Spain, sometimes I would eat different kinds of cheese tapas. I would add a little bit of tomato jam to the tapas and it was out of this world. Yesterday, I got the craving for cheese and tomato jam. But, I didn’t have any jam in my fridge. What did I do? I made my own! So easy and so tasty. Trust me, you’ll want to try it.

I had some different varieties of Manchego cheese and I also had some mozzarella that I wanted to use up. I thought, “what can I do …?” I remembered just once I had this delicious little mozzarella sandwich.  So, I got into the kitchen and I recreated it. I call them Mozzarella Mini Sandwiches. Tapa style.  It’s yummy.

Ingredients for the mozzarella mini sandwiches ; 

– Mozzarella

– White bread or any kind of soft bread (I used honey oat bread).

– Bread crumbs

– Egg

– 2 cups vegetable or canola oil

Cut the bread into shapes. I cut it in squares, using my ravioli stamp. Slice the mozzarella into the same shape as the bread.





Make the sandwich. Beat the egg and place the sandwich into the egg and then into the bread crumbs. Fry it for a few minutes on both sides until it’s brown.

the sandwich

the sandwich


Remove and place onto a plate with paper towel.

Ready to serve!


mozzarella sandwich + tomato jam

Ingredients for the tomato jam (makes  about 1/2 pint):

–  2 large, ripe tomatoes (use as many as you want)

– 1 cup sugar

– 1/2 fresh lemon juice

Place the tomatoes in a boiling pot for a few minutes. Place them immediately into a cold water bath and then peel them.

Place them into a blender for a minute.

In a sauce pan, combine the sugar, lemon juice and tomatoes that were already blended. Stir on a low to medium heat for 10 minutes. Place a lid on the sauce pan and leave it on a low heat for 35- 45 minutes. Let it cool down and then place into a jar.






You can make as much as you want and store it if you want to make more than 1 jar. I would recommend to place the jam into the jars, put the lids on and place the jars into a pot with 1inch of hot water for 20 minutes. The jam will last longer in the refrigerator. Otherwise is good for a few weeks.

Easy, cheap and tasty! Hope you enjoy it 🙂


I am happy to be sharing this post with Friday Fiesta! Yaay! Its Friday, Have a wonderful weekend!