the book of tapas

Ham and egg tapa from The Book of Tapas

One of the objectives of this whole cook-through-my-cookbook-bookcase experiment was to reconnect with cookbooks I used to use all of the time but have since…well, not abandoned, per se, but haven’t referenced as much as I’d like to. The Book of Tapas is one where I have a handful of recipes that have entered our regular rotation—I’m particularly fond of the lemon-garlic chicken wings—but a few Fridays ago I decided to finally try a recipe I sort of half-assed back in New York and then never attempted to make again: the ham and quail’s egg tapa. Read More


Chicken Liver Tortilla/Tortilla de Higaditos de Pollo

Tommy DeVito: Hey, what do you like, the leg or the wing, Henry? Or ya still go for the old hearts and lungs?
Henry Hill: [Vomiting] Oh, that’s so bad!


Despite Michael being the resident meat-lover in our household, I’m the offal enthusiast. I can’t get enough of the so-called nasty bits, and I think this has something to do with the fact that my grandmom would always let me have the various turkey giblets when she would roast a turkey, and I’d happily snack on a lung or heart with abandon. These days I naturally gravitate towards any offal tacos I find at a taqueria, but can usually only look with longing at the many recipes in our cookbooks that feature things like chicken liver or tripe because someone doesn’t like the smell/taste. (To be fair, this is how I feel about broccoli. Nasty stuff, that is.)

This means I am usually Tommy DeVito to Michael’s Henry Hill, and I’ll admit I enjoy quoting the line above with the same amount of glee that Joe Pesci does in Goodfellas. Related: that is an excellent movie. Read More

Idiazabal Cheese and Fried Onion Tapa

Oh, it’s been a week for the pair of us, for very different reasons. We’re taking solace in the fact that tonight we’re headed to Michael’s favorite place in the city to find rejuvenation and restoration, otherwise known as Dinosaur Bar-B-Que. If you can’t tell, restoration for us comes in a plate of delicious barbecue (well, for me, it’s their phenomenal Cuban sandwich platter and the smoked wings) because it’s food that we really can’t make ourselves, at least not properly with a smoker or outdoor grill. We’ve kept our eating out at a minimum lately for a variety of reasons, but it’s finally time to indulge in food that we can’t make ourselves in our little New York apartment. That’s not to say, of course, that we haven’t been enjoying ourselves on that end as well. Read More

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