Many restaurants that we visit locally have the good old fashioned classics like Prawns Pil Pil, Patatas Bravas and Boquerones Fritos, but sometimes you feel like being a bit more creative and exploring more international flavours.
I didn’t know where to go for that.
So when I opened The Little Geranium in La Cala last month we opted for an Artistic Tapas menu, with dishes like home smoked salmon blinis with avruga caviar and caper berries, crispy duck salad with pomegranate and oriental dressing, skewers of free range chicken with cashew satay dip and tempura of prawns with sushi ginger, chilli and wasabi dip.
To our delight, the clients loved the menu and the only problem now is accommodating everyone!
So with artistic tapas in mind, things that are simple to make at home, it gives me great pleasure to launch the first in a series of easy to make dishes, perfect for sharing and a far less formal way of throwing a party.
But don’t tell everyone or they may alljust stay at home!
Goats Cheese with Candied Walnuts and Apple Caviar
Ingredients for 4 (Enough for 2 slates or plates)
Approx 125g of Spanish goats cheese ( Queso de Cabra)
Approx 1 tablespoon of caperberries ( see photo)
Approx 2 level teaspoons of Apple (or Shallot) Caviar (Available from some good supermarkets)
1 tablespoon of walnuts
Half tablespoon of brown sugar
A small amount of salad including rocket leaves
1 small bunch of basil
250 ml of Olive oil
A few tiny heritage (mixed colours) tomatoes (optional if you cannot find the fruit caviar)
A teaspoon of Spanish honey
A small blow torch
First make the basil oil by blanching the basil and stalks in boiling water for 20 seconds and remove and shock in iced water. Put the olive oil in your blender, add the basil and blend until fully green. Remove, season and decant into a small squeezy bottle.
Next heat a small frying pan and fry the walnuts dry. Sprinkle the sugar over, mix, stir and shake using a wooden spoon to keep them moving or else they will burn. Remove as soon as they start to colour and allow to cool.
Now cut the goats cheese into 5mm pieces with a warm sharp knife using a jug of warm water to clean the knife each time. Set aside 6 slices for 2 plates or slates.
Following the simple design of the dish as per picture, construct the plates with 3 pieces of goats cheese and a few caperberries, some apple caviar and a small amount of salad leaves and rocket leaves.
Now take the walnuts and break them gently with your fingers into halves and quarters before sprinkling around the dish
Add a small amount of caperberries and then the fruit caviar using a small teaspoon.
Drizzle the dish with the basil oil and then squeeze a drizzle of honey over the cheese.
Finally use your blow torch (or you can pan fry dry in a very hot pan) to glaze the cheese, season with Maldon salt flakes and a grind of fresh black pepper and serve in the centre of the table.
A perfect combination of warm creamy cheese with sweet crunchy nuts, basil and honey flavours and textures from the caperberries, yummy!