Karen Wright: Patatas bravas ... simple side dish that will spice up meals!
This recent heatwave has been a bit of a nightmare if, like me, you need to spend lots of your time working in the kitchen!
I find that getting up early and getting my jobs done before the sun really gets going is the way to cope.
Pastry is really difficult to work with if it is warm. What I do is chill my pastry in the freezer rather than the fridge so it is cold and firm to roll out. Ideally you need cold butter, cold water and cold hands too. Of course, summery weather makes us gravitate to salads and barbecues.
When I was a child, a salad was a very simple affair - simply lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, boiled egg and a slice of ham. Fancy things like coleslaw and potato salad had not been invented back then or, if they had, they never made it into our house.
I have always been partial to potatoes and one of my favourite things to make as a side to a meal are patatas bravas. This dish is possibly the most popular tapas served in Spain Fiery red in colour and in taste.
These potatoes are simple to make at home. Peel potatoes and cut into chunks. Boil them in salted water until they are just done but not so soft that they are mushy. Drain them and lay them on a board to cool completely.
Meanwhile, make a tomato sauce by softening a chopped onion in olive oil, add a couple of cloves of crushed garlic and a finely sliced chilli. Add a bit of tomato puree and about half a can of chopped tomatoes. If it is a bit thick, loosen it with water.
Add the cold potatoes and stir through over a moderate heat until they are hot and coated in the sauce. I like to serve mine with a squeeze of lemon juice and a handful of parsley. They are great served cold too!
Next weekend is Yorkshire Day and I will be sharing a recipe for my Yorkshire Tea loaf, a good old classic!
For more tips and recipes go to http://www.karenwrightbakes.co.uk