Plato de verano (“Summer’s dish”)

Plato de verano (Summer's dish)

When it gets hot in Spain we avoid eating hot food and turn our attention towards things that are eaten cold. You might have heard about gazpacho or salmorejo!

Then there is the “plato de verano”, which literally means “summer’s dish”. It’s not a unique recipe, but a way of describing “something somewhat substantial that you eat cold”. It depends on the cook and whatever is available on the day.

My recipe provides a good balance between sharpness, oiliness, savouriness, softness and crunchiness so that it’s a pleasant and refreshing thing to eat, but without having to bite too much (too much effort if it’s very hot).

¡Buen provecho!

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Sourdough pitta bread

Two pitta breads with charred bits, slightly puffed up, on a plate

Now that summer is officially under way and it (sometimes) gets hot, I tend to avoid turning the oven on, as our flat gets very hot and we don’t need any extra heat. It’s time for salads, gazpachos and things that can be eaten cold(ish).

However… sometimes the pull of making something with flour is still strong. And that’s when I reach for these very easy to make pitta breads, which are dry-fried in a pan rather than baked in the oven.

It will still be hot in the kitchen for a bit, but then you’re done and ready to eat your little freshly baked wonders. And it’s so exciting to see them puff up! One of my favourite parts.

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Za’atar bread

Za'atar bread loaf, sliced

We bought a really big pack of Za’atar a couple of weeks ago, and the first thought I had (apart from cooking more cauliflower fritters) was that it would somehow make its way into bread.

First we made some sourdough manakish: a sort of flatbread topped with a paste made of za’atar and olive oil. That was very good!

Then I had an idea: what about making a hybrid between manakish and a ‘classic’ loaf?

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Leek and broccoli risotto

Leek and broccoli risotto

I signed up to a “British vegetable box”, and what that translates into these days is: a lot of leeks, carrots and potatoes.

It’s a fun challenge to come up with new recipes (new to me, I suppose!) to use them in different ways.

So after I made a leek and potato soup (a Devvers classic), I devised a leek, carrot and potato fritatta, and then… a leek and broccoli risotto for Sunday lunch, because Sundays should be for rice dishes!

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