Bollit / hervido (“boiled”)

Picture of a portion of bollit / hervido in a soup dish, containing half a red onion, a carrot and one potato with a dash of butter

In the quest for the most extravagant and spectacularly looking dishes, we often overlook the basics. What a shame!

So here’s one of them: bollit (in Valencian) or hervido (in Spanish). Which literally means… boiled!

This dish is extremely simple, consisting of boiling vegetables in salted water, and then having them with a bit of fat of your choosing. I know—it sounds “unappetising”, and it looks “ugly”, but it can be oh so comforting, especially when the weather is cold or if you’re feeling not so great and all you need is some simple food that doesn’t require extremely sophisticated skills to prepare.

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Puchero

Fideos soup (sopa de fideos)

Whenever we feel under the weather or just in search of some comfort, I channel my inner grandmother and cook a traditional Spanish stew: puchero.

Puchero in the pressure cooker
Puchero in the pressure cooker

This is a traditional “value for money” dish, as it’s easy to cook, relatively cheap, and the leftovers are also used for other dishes. It’s like the gift that keeps on giving ?

A classic on Sundays pretty much all year long (except when it gets hot!).

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Poison pie

Poison pie close up

☠️ This is a great pie to bake for Halloween… or any time you feel witchy! ??‍♀️??‍♀️ ☠️

I got Malcolm Bird‘s fabulous book “The witch’s handbook” as a Christmas present in 1989 and we enjoyed reading it and making some of the crafty activities, but we never baked much at home, and also most of the ingredients in the cooking section were a bit unusual for Spanish palates, so the cooking recipes were sort of out of reach.

I still liked the book so much that I recently bought a second hand English edition—and it came just in time for Halloween. The best! ?

As I browsed through the book, the Poison Pie recipe caught my eye. Why not bake it, now that I feel confident to do so?

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