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  • The Chopping Blog

Brandade: Your New Favorite Dip

  I remember first trying brandade when I was in culinary school and experiencing a moment of euphoria. Brandade is a Mediterranean dip consisting of pureed potatoes, salt cod, garlic and olive oil, ...

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From Spain's Cellar to your Table

  It takes patience, along with something else that’s in short supply these days, to ease a red wine into maturity and that’s adequate storage.

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What’s Your Favorite Black Food?

Black food is all the rage right now, from bread made with charcoal to inky cocktails. With Halloween right around the corner, I couldn’t resist stirring up something a little “darker” than my usual ...

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Flan: the Most Heavenly Caramel Custard

  My husband and I hosted Mother's Day brunch at our house last weekend, and although it's a lot of work, I would rather spend quality time with my mom in the comfort of our home rather than a ...

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Viva Espana at The Chopping Block

  Spain hit Chicago’s fine dining scene well after France, Italy, even Mexico! Now, the flavors of Spain are favorites in the city and suburbs, from casual tapas to elegant Paella, from sparkling ...

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You say Potato, I say Patata with an Easy Spanish Omelette

  Tortilla de Patatas (potato omelette) is as ubiquitous in Spain as it is delicious. This potato omelette is found in tapas bars where it is served warm or cold, topped with aioli or not, full of ...

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Paella Party

  Paella is one of those dishes that I love to eat, but seldom make at home. It’s one of those specialties you need to order in a restaurant for it to be made properly, right? 

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How to Throw a Paella Dinner Party

  One of my favorite meals to prepare for an intimate dinner party is paella. Paella is one of those one-pan meals that, if done correctly, is something truly outstanding. I usually serve a few ...

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Spanish-Style Braised Short Ribs are Long on Flavor

There are two things I will always try at a restaurant if they are on the menu: short ribs and duck. While neither one is all that difficult to cook, there are a few key factors that I look for in ...

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Do You Know Your Oils?

One of my favorite things I learned at The Chopping Block is that it's important to consider your oils before you start cooking. For many, especially for all of our regulars, this is old news. But ...

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