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Monday, 24 July 2017

Tapas at home Inspired by La Casa Delicatessen


Let me tell you abut a little place I have fallen in love with. La Casa Delicatessen in the Grainger Market in Newcastle is somewhere I didn't know existed until a couple of months ago. Already it is my favourite place to pick up any Spanish food I'm in the mood for. The guy who works there is great (I should really ask his name next time I'm there), he is so friendly and really passionate about the produce they sell and that sort of service really stands out for me. The first time we went we tried a selection of Manchego that had been cured in various ways. One with beer, one with chilli and one with brandy. All were delicious and we left with a little wedge of the brandy cured Manchego and a small pack of sliced chorizo. We promised ourselves the next time we have tapas night at home (which we do every few months) we would go back and stock up on supplies.

A couple of weeks ago it was time for our next Tapas night, I did make a couple of dishes from scratch just with store cupboard ingredients. I made some quick garlic bread, which is just toasted bread drizzled in olive oil and sprinkled with garlic granules (so easy but really tasty). I also made Patatas Bravas by cutting a couple of potatoes into cubes and frying them in olive oil with some rosemary sprigs. The Bravas sauce I make uses passata heated with some chopped garlic, paprika, chilli powder, salt and pepper. Put the potatoes into a bowl and spoon over the sauce and finish with a few teaspoonfuls of Garlic mayo dotted on top. Now onto the produce we got from La Casa.

Serrano Ham


Charcuterie is a big favourite in our house and for me cured ham is King. The Charcuterie selection at La Casa is vast and there is everything from Lomo Ham, Cecina Smoked Beef and Iberico Ham. We went for the Serrano Ham and weren't disappointed, the meaty slices were perfect, just enough fat to enhance the flavour and very moreish (why do we always buy too little?)

Chorizo


As I said Charcuterie is a big deal to us and Mrs. Cool's preference is Chorizo. There are numerous options available from slices of Chorizo to whole sausages. We went for these little links which I fried in olive oil. The Chorizo was to die for and the oil was great for dipping the garlic bread into.

Manchego Cured in Brandy


The Cheese, My God! The Cheese. Where do I begin with this cheese? This cheese is what brought us back to La Casa and it will be brining us back again. I can honestly say this is the best cheese I have EVER had. Not only is the flavour on the Manchego great but the subtle brandy taste really elevates it to something exquisite. This stuff is like crack, once you have a taste you want more and more and more. I really need to have some more right now. I'm having withdrawls.

Wine


You can't have Meat and Cheese without having Wine, It's the Law! The wine selection is huge and we went for this lovely Rioja. I'm not usually a fan of Rioja but as it was a Spanish tapas night we couldn't really have a Sancerre or a Merlot. It was outstanding and really went perfectly with all our dishes.

It amazes me that this little nook in the Grainger Market is so packed full of amazing produce, I can't sing the praises of La Casa highly enough, I really love this place and hope you will to. If you would like to find out more you can visit their website here and you can follow them on Twitter here.

Well, that's all for now

S

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