La Primavera by Rob Davies, Vida Comida at The Swan
So, despite the worst snow storm in 10 years, spring is well and truly on the way. In the kitchen this means a world of new, fresh and tasty products that we can source locally and prepare daily. One of the most fun things about a tapas kitchen is that we can change our menu daily to reflect what is lush and abundant at any time.
Spring in Spain is, for me, all about lamb. I urge you next time you are there to seek out an Asador. Asador is a spit and these restaurants specialise in roasted meats. Cooked often in wood fired ovens; typically you choose a quarter, half or whole lamb, which is then served to your hungry group with salad and fresh bread to soak up the meat juices. Spanish lamb, or Lechazo, is much younger than you would find in the UK. This means that the meat is softer and has a milder flavour that really does melt in the mouth. I have said it many times before, a perfect afternoon for me is to sit on a veranda in Aranda, drinking Duero and eating Lechazo with the warm spring sunshine offering a promise of a long hot summer (in Spain at least).
Just now we don’t have Lechazo on our menu sadly, but we do have some amazing meat dishes that take their inspiration from this long, slow style of cooking. Every dish we serve is prepared from raw ingredients on site in small batches to ensure freshness and to minimise waste. Our PiriPiri Chicken thighs are marinated overnight in our special mix of herbs; then they are roasted for hours at 150°C to get those flavours right through and to ensure the meat is deliciously soft. When ordered we bring them back to the perfect temperature and make sure that the skin is insanely crispy. We serve these on a bed of our super spicy Bravas Salsa, which is again made on site almost every day.
Our fat and juicy pork ribs and our sweet, but filthy, chicken wings get a very similar treatment. This is our trio of meats, made in homage to the Asadors of Spain. Grab a bunch of napkins because, like great fish and chips, these dishes are best eaten with your fingers. In fact, I am popping out to get you some lemon scented wipes…. it is going to get messy!
www.vidacomida.co.uk Phone: 01935 816116.