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I have recently developed this huge passion for cooking, even though I've been cooking since i was 15 and have been a chef for the last 10 years. I think I am addicted to it. Or am I addicted to eating my cooking? Either way, I want to share my experiences with whom ever is interested. That is why I started this blog. Currently I am self employed as a private/personal chef and a stay at home dad. I am very thankful to have ended my restaurant career not so long ago! It's a hard life, especially when your trying to raise a family! I live in Naples, Florida where I met my beautiful wife while working at a yacht club about 3 years ago. We now have a little 6 month old daughter and life as we know it has changed forever ( for the better)! There is something going on in the food world that is very exciting! People are starting to open their eyes a little. We're going back in time, back to the farm, back to the dinner table. Something that has to be done in my opinion. I spent a lot of time at the dinner table as a child and thought is was very beneficial in how I ended up. The thing I like best about being a chef is that I will never learn it all. Ever!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Spanish Meatballs with Romesco

Last night I did a cooking class for a bunch of Mommas.  Mommas being woman with children.  I've been doing this class/cooking club for the past 6 months and every month has a theme.  This month we decided to do Sangria and Tapas.  Spanish in nature, Tapas are basically appetizer size portions of all types of food.  As for Sangria, it is an alcoholic beverage made from wine, fruit and many other different ingredients.  Here is a basic recipe for Sangria:

·         1 Bottle of red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Rioja reds, Zinfandel, Shiraz)
·         1 Lemon cut into wedges
·         1 Orange cut into wedges
·         2 Tbsp sugar
·         1 Shot brandy
·         2 Cups ginger ale or club soda
Pour wine in the pitcher and squeeze the juice wedges from the lemon and orange into the wine. Toss in the fruit wedges (leaving out seeds if possible) and add sugar and brandy. Chill overnight. Add ginger ale or club soda just before serving.
If you'd like to serve right away, use chilled red wine and serve over lots of ice.
Addition ideas: sliced strawberries, peaches, handful of fresh blueberries, raspberries, kiwi, a shot or two of gin, brandy or rum, a cup of ginger ale, citrus soda pop or lime juice.
With the Sangria I cooked a Tortilla Espanola (potato omelet) with Sofrito (Spanish tomato sauce), a Orange and Red Onion Salad and Spanish Meatballs with Romesco.  The meatballs were sensational especially with the Romesco sauce.  Romesco is a traditional sauce from the Catalonia region in Spain.  It's very easy to make and can accompany many foods.  The meatballs had a unique flavor probably because of the unique ingredients of pine nuts and cinnamon.  
I would highly recommend having a Sangria and Tapas party at your house.  Invite some friends over, enjoy some wonderful food, drink and good times!  
Here's the recipe for the Meatballs and Romesco.  
  Spanish Meatballs With Romesco Sauce 
1¼ hours | 45 min prep
For the meatballs
·         1 lb ground pork
·         1 cup fresh breadcrumb
·         eggs, beaten
·         3 tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped
·         garlic cloves, finely chopped
·         1/4 cup pine nuts
·         1/2 teaspoon salt
·         1/2 teaspoon black pepper
·         1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
·         1-2 tablespoon olive oil
For the sauce
·         1 tablespoon olive oil
·         1 slice white bread (large)
·         1/2 cup whole almond, toasted
·         1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
·         garlic clove, chopped
·         1/2 cup jarred spanish pimiento, drained
·         1/2 lb tomato, peeled, seeded, and chopped
·         1/4 teaspoon paprika
·         1/4 teaspoon salt
·         1/2 teaspoon black pepper
·         1/4 cup red wine vinegar
·         1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  1. For the meatballs:.
  2. In a bowl, combine pork, bread crumbs, eggs, parsley, garlic, pine nuts, salt, pepper and cinnamon. Form into 1-inch balls.
  3. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Working in batches to avoid crowding, saute the meatballs until well-browned and cooked through, about five minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain.
  4. For the sauce:.
  5. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Fry the slice of bread on both sides until golden (about 1 minute).
  6. In a food processor, finely chop the bread, almonds, pepper flakes and garlic. Add the pimientos, tomatoes, paprika, salt and pepper. Process to a smooth paste. Add the vinegar and process to combine. With the machine running, gradually add the oil in a thin stream to emulsify the sauce.
  7. Transfer meatballs to a serving plate and serve with Romesco sauce.


  1. I really like the look of this recipe, thanks for posting

  2. Pam, they are unbeatable. Thanks for commenting!

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. Welcome to the Foodie Blogroll!

    Wow, those meatballs sound great! Definitely not your ordinary frozen piece of crud.

  5. I figured out blogging! This is my very first time for a good cause. You are the greatest Chef in the land Don! Can't wait to figure out what to make next! Everything always ends up so delicious:)