José Andrés owns the popular Washington, D.C. tapas restaurant Jaleo. His production Vamos a Cocinar on Television Espanola is Spain’s most popular cooking program. In fall 2008, Clarkson Potter will publish a companion cookbook to the Made In Spain series.
How They Cook Back Home
From his home region of Asturias in northern Spain, Jose showcases its great cheeses, making a sweet and sour salad of cheese and tomatoes, with a honey and vinegar dressing. He fries some golden brown monkfish, and takes to the seas off Asturias to risk his neck while fishing for barnacles.
A Pilgrim's Progress In Food
Andres explores the food of the magical, mystical region of Galicia where pilgrims have traveled for centuries. He cooks a simple tapa of green Padron peppers stuffed with cheese and the traditional pilgrim's meal of a chicken empanada, or turnover. He fishes for octopus off the region's rocky coast, eats a traditional Galician dish of boiled octopus with Spanish paprika and drinks a glass of the pilgrims' flambeed punch.
The Sweet Spanish Center
Andres explains the Spanish sweet tooth, cooking pancakes with chocolate before showing viewers the wonderfully thick hot chocolate of Spain. Just outside the capital, he visits a strawberry farm and returns home to prepare strawberries in wine syrup. He ends at a traditional bull fight in Madrid, finishing off the evening with a traditional stew of bull's meat.
Spain's Vegetable Garden
Sweet, hand-roasted red piquillo peppers are now sold in jars across the United States. Jose stuffs some piquillos with cheese, then takes us to Navarra to show how they painstakingly roast and peel the peppers. He returns to his home kitchen to prepare a cheese and white asparagus salad. He ends with a trip to Pamplona, where the young men run with the bulls - while older men try to improve their cooking in culinary societies.
Tuna and Tapas
There's tuna and there's Spanish tuna. Jose prepares a classic tuna salad before joining the extraordinary tuna catch off the southern coast of Spain. He returns home to cook seared tuna with sesame seeds and sweet piquillo peppers. He explains the great sherry culture of Andaluc#a, and goes bar-hopping to eat the region's great tapas food.
Surf and Turf
Jose turns Spain's sparkling wine, cava, into a light dressing for oysters and a refreshing mimosa cocktail. He goes mushroom hunting in the Catalan mountains, before cooking a crumbled pork sausage with wild mushrooms. Back in Spain, he fishes for shrimp and eats Catalan seafood in traditional and modern ways.
Earth, Wine and Fire
Jose cooks a cold soup of Basque cheese bought in Manhattan before going to the rustic farms where the cheese-makers live. He introduces us to the great red and white wines of the Basque Country, then returns home to cook a traditional dish of baby squid with caramelized onions. He finishes by eating an extraordinary meal cooked entirely on a charcoal grill.
The Magic of Saffron and Cervantes
Jose uses widely-available Manchego cheese to prepare a salad of cheese, tomato, thyme and walnuts. He shows us the food eaten by the Man from La Mancha - Cervantes' Don Quixote. And he is witness to the wonder of saffron, when the remarkable crocus emerges from the earth and is turned into the world's most expensive spice. Jose cooks a traditional dish of rabbit with saffron rice before returning to Spain to eat a marzipan dessert.
A Taste of the Sea
Andres prepares scallops in their shells with Albarino white wine and visits the dramatic seafood farms of this northwestern region. Back home, he steams mussels with bay leaf and serves them with potatoes and Spanish smoked paprika. He returns to Galicia to watch the magical cooking of the legendary Spanish potato tortilla, or omelet.
Food for the Family
Asturias means family for Jose, and he prepares a simple apple and cheese salad with his mother's favorite blue cheese, Cabrales. Jose shows us the region's traditional hard cider, and returns home to add cider vinegar to some caramelized onions that he serves with light and fluffy corn cakes. Back in Asturias, he joins his family for a hearty bean stew with sausages.
A Cultural and Culinary Capital
Jose cooks a quick tapa of fried eggs and Spanish chorizo sausage before showing us the artistic and food culture of the Spanish capital. He eats a fried squid sandwich on the streets, and sips an elegant cup of consomme in a historic restaurant. He prepares a refreshing salad of clementines, anchovy and olives, and returns to Spain for a huge meal of Madrid stew.
Using a Catalan olive oil bought in the US, Jose prepares two tapas: marinated olives and toast with cheese and anchovy. He takes us to his beloved market in Barcelona, and gets inspired to cook a creamy rice dish of mushrooms, artichokes and cuttlefish. Back in Spain he shows us two great Catalan artists: Salvador Dali and his own culinary mentor, Ferran Adria, hailed by critics as the world's most creative chef.
Red Red Wine
No Spanish wine is more famous than Rioja, and Jose starts with a quick tapa of apples in a red wine syrup. He takes us to a great Rioja winemaker before cooking his own version of the region's classic dish of potato and chorizo sausage. Back in Spain, he shows us Rioja's superb vegetable market and eats at a special restaurant run by a mother and son who cook their own recipes.
The Onion That Would Be King
Jose travels to Catalunya, the region where he was raised, to join in the Calcot Festival-a joyous occasion attended by thousands that honors, of all things, an unusual onion. He uses a similar onion to cook a white bean omelet, and shows us how to create two more traditional dishes from this area: One is mar y montana, (a Spanish surf-and-turf), which he pairs with the region's famed Priorat wines; the other canelloni. (OH, you thought that was Italian? Not any more!)
The Land of Fire
Centuries of history and generations of cooking tradition come together in Castilla Y Leon, where Jose travels to restaurants that have mastered fire. We look on as master chefs roast pigs and lambs, then watch as Jose prepare the perfect roast rack of lamb. And we meet the Iberico pig-source of the Iberico ham that was unavailable in the U.S. until recently, but is now sweeping the nation as the caviar of cold cuts.
The Tale of the Drunken Goat
After creating a special "drunken goat cheese and tomato salad," Joseventures through the region of Murcia in search of the truth behind "drunken goat cheese" and finds it! After visiting the great historic sites of Murcia the Roman theater at Cartagena, the still working ancient water wheels Jose takes us to a wonderful winery, and explores the famed Murcia vegetable gardens (and cooks some great dishes with the veggies). Finally, Jose tries his hand at a unique style of fishing and, of course, cooks what he catches.
Jose explores the fascinating region of Valencia, famed for its rice fields and paella restaurants. After visiting the best of them, Jose takes us back to his home in America and teaches us to cook paella at a backyard barbecue with his wife and three daughters! Jose also creates a special tapa with Spain's sweetest citrus clementines, then visits the fields where the fruit is picked; and, just for fun, Jose tries his hand at eel fishing before cooking the eels up in the traditional dish all i pebre.
Seas of Delicacies
Jose travels to Iles Balears where he begins by making a unique omelet with sobrasada, a rare spreadable sausage then takes us to the islands where those sausages originate. At a black pig farm on Mallorca he rediscovers a delicacy from his childhood then takes us to a patisserie that makes a famed local dessert from the pork lard! Then onto the island of Menorca for some lobster fishing (and a traditional lobster dish, of course). Jose visits both a great cheesemaker and one of the worlds most renowned gin makers where he reveals the recipe for the perfect gin and tonic.
Cold Soup and Hot Flamenco
Jose travels to Andalucia's Granada, the city that made cold soup famous, and creates two of his own the famed gazpacho, and the purely Andalucian delicacy, ajo blanco. He dances his way through one of Spain's most famed festivals, the Feria de Abril in Sevilla, and takes us on a tapas bar hopping trip to sample the local delicacies all sandwiched around a visit to La Alhambra, one of the seven wonders of the modern world.
Exploring the fertile peaks, fields and valleys of Cantabria, the area known as "Green Spain," Jose creates a unique tapa pairing Cantabria's most prized product anchovies with a surprising ingredient: nectarines. Jose returns to Cantabria to follow the anchovy trail and see how the locals eat the then heads to the thriving capital city of Santander and the beautiful town of Santillana del Mar, to explore ancient cave paintings. After quick stops to a great bakery, a great restaurant, and a great cable car ride, it's back to Washington D.C. to create a super steak with Cantabria's creamy blue picon cheese.
Jose Goes Nuts
A return to Valencia makes a star out of the region's nuts. Jose whips together a nutty dessert called postre de turron, then heads to Valencia to show how turron a nutty paste is made, starting with the beautiful almond trees in Jijona and ending in the factories and stores that make and sell this regional Christmastime delicacy. He even visits a "horchateria" where tiger nuts are made into a creamy drink! There are stops at great wineries along the way, time out to cook up a delicious Valencian noodle dish known as Fideua, and a stop at the wild, fire-filled Valencia Fallas festival. Jose winds up at one of Spain's most famed restaurants, El Poblet where he watches his old friend, chef Quiqui Dacosta, prepare a dish made with real gold.
Cherries and Cheeses
After cooking two quick tapas - one with a local cheese from Extremadura, the other with the region's cherries Jose makes a sweet escape to the startlingly beautiful cherry fields of Extremadura, meets the cheesemakers (and the sheep) responsible for the decadent creamy cheese known as Torta del Casar. After giving a pinch of pimenton Spanish paprika to the traditional Extremadura salad known as Cojodongo, Jose's inspired to return to the region to visit the fields and factories where the unique sweet and smoky Spanish spice is made. And he reveals why a French culinary tradition must pay thanks to a small monastery here.
A Fairy Tale Come True
In the mythical forests of Aragon, a heavenly region almost too beautiful to be real, Jose is inspired to cook two very earthly regional dishes: Migas, an ancient dish based on breadcrumbs (in this case, paired with mushrooms and serrano ham) and pollo al chilindron, a chicken stew made with a green and red pepper sauce. He returns to Aragon to stroll the Pyrenees Mountains, fish for trout, and even hunt for truffles, the old-fashioned way.
Jose explores one of the most sophisticated regions of Europe, Basque Country, and cooks some of the iconic dishes of the countryside from "pintxos" (small regional tapas) including one named after a movie star, to the delicate cod dish known as bacalao al pil pil. He takes us to the traditional place in Spain for eating bacalao a cider bar; explores the beautiful city of San Sebastian; and he visits Arzak the restaurant of one of his mentors, and one of the greatest restaurants in all of Spain.
Islands in the Sun
Since the United Nations has declared 2008 the International Year of the Potato, Jose begins his trip to these stunningly beautiful islands of Canarias by cooking up a fascinating local dish of wrinkled potatoes and two great sauces, a mojo rojo and a mojo verde then visits the potato fields on the island of Tenerife. While there, of course, Jose stops off at a great winery and a fabulous restaurant, then ventures on to the island of Fuerteventura (but not before creating a superb sancocho a local version of fish stew).