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Relish book and tote bag in restaurant
When chef patron Simon Shaw shares one of his recipes, they’re seized upon by customers wishing to recreate some of the magic of El Gato Negro at home. That’s why we’re delighted to announce the release of Relish Publications ‘North West Second Helping’ cookbook, featuring original recipes from the region’s finest chefs and restaurants, including three exclusives from Simon.

This is the third time we have been featured in a Relish book: originally in Relish Yorkshire Second Helping in 2010, then Relish North East And Yorkshire in 2013. Now with our move across to Manchester in 2015 we’re eligible to feature in the latest North West edition. Is this a first, representing both sides of the Pennines?

For the first time the cover of this deluxe hardback book is exclusive to El Gato Negro, featuring the facade of our converted townhouse on King Street by night. Along with a wonderful selection of recipes from many acclaimed establishments in the region, this edition showcases Simon’s recipes for:

  • Gillardeau oysters, yuzu juice, wasabi tobiko and pickled cucumber
  • Hot & sugar cured Cornish mackerel with celeriac and pink grapefruit salad
  • Turron mousse, pear, basil, almond brittle

This bespoke-jacketed book is on sale only from the restaurant for £20, and comes paired with an exclusive El Gato Negro cotton tote bag, making this the perfect treat for yourself, or an ideal gift for anyone who appreciates fine food. We hope you enjoy the read as much as the dishes!

Ah, Creme Catalan. Such a simple, yet perfect combination of flavours and textures. Everyone seems to love shattering the topping and breaking into the delicate orange-scented delights below. I’ve always loved Crème brûlée but when I first visited Spain I had this and thought the orange zest in the Spanish version made a great thing even better. Our customers have always agreed and this has been our most popular dessert over the years.

Creme Catalan by chef Simon Shaw of El Gato Negro Tapas

Creme Catalan (Crema Catalana)

Serves 4
Ingredients

  • 5 medium egg yolks
  • 375g double cream
  • 200g full fat milk
  • 75g caster sugar
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • Seeds of 1 vanilla pod
  • Extra caster sugar to finish

Method

Add the vanilla seeds and orange zest to the cream and in a pan. Bring to a simmer, then remove from heat.

Mix together the egg yolks and caster sugar in a bowl. Add the milk in stages and stir to combine.

Pour mixture into 4 wide moulds or ramekins and cook in a bain-marie at 100°C until set. Refrigerate for 2 hours until chilled.

Sprinkle each with a fine, even layer of caster sugar and gently flame with a blowtorch* until golden, taking care not to burn the sugar. Return to the fridge for 5 min to set.

* If you don’t have a blowtorch you can always use a grill for the final stage, although it’s harder to get as crisp and glassy a finish on the sugar.

Shattered Creme Catalan by chef Simon Shaw of El Gato Negro Tapas

I used to make sabayon as a special in our old restaurant in Yorkshire: it was always popular with customers and sold out in a flash. Sabayons are great because they’re quick and easy desserts to make and you can can tailor them to whatever is in season. As a result they’re a bit of a chef’s secret weapon!

The start of September is one of my favourite times of the year: we’re spoiled with an abundance of great produce both in the shops and the hedgerows. This recipe takes advantage of the late summer / autumn fruits which you can easily buy right now. It’s also a great way of using up a little left-over white wine or fizz in the bottom of a bottle.

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Autumn fruit sabayon

Serves 4

Ingredients

For the fruit

  • 2 tangerines
  • 4 figs
  • 1 punnet blackberries
  • 2 pears
  • 1 punnet blueberries

For the sabayon

  • 4 medium egg yolks
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 150ml white wine (dry is preferred, but this is a good way to use up any white or sparkling wine)
  • 150ml lightly whipped double cream
  • Spring of mint and icing sugar to garnish

Method

Wash and prepare fruit. Quarter the figs, halve the pears and segment the tangerines. Place to one side at room temperature.

Whisk the egg yolks, sugar and white wine in a metal bowl over a pan of boiling water until the mixture thickens to ribbon stage.

Remove from heat and whisk until cool. Fold in whipped cream, taking care not to over-whisk or the mix will revert to liquid. (Cook’s note: this mix will keep covered in the fridge for up to 5 days)

Place fruit in serving dish and gently top with the sabayon. Garnish with a sprig of mint, dust with icing sugar (optional) and serve.

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A classic El Gato Negro dish, marrying smoky rich Spanish flavours with a superlative English cider. A great riff on pork and apple!

Mini Catalan Chorizo in Aspall Cider

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 300g mini chorizo dulce (available from Brindisa & selected supermarkets) or good cooking chorizo
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 200ml Aspall cider (cyder)
  • 50ml sherry vinegar
  • 50g chicken gravy granules
  • 25g fresh flat leaf parsley

Method

Cut chorizo into 3cm pieces. Gently warm in a non-stick pan until the oil starts to come out of the sausage. Carefully remove chorizo from the pan, leaving the oil in place.

Add the sherry vinegar to the oil and reduce over low heat to make a syrup. Add the cider and reduce again. Add the chicken stock and reduce by half. Whisk in gravy granules to thicken.

Once the sauce is thick enough to coat to the back of a spoon, add the chorizo and cook for a further two min or until warmed through. Finish with chopped parsley. Enjoy!

 

El Gato Negro's El'spresso MartiniWhen our talented beverage manager Garry Foy joined us, we knew he had plenty up his sleeve. Since then he’s been in his lab, playing around with some truly spectacular Spanish-influenced cocktails for his top floor bar. So we thought it would be good to share something from him, and get everyone in the mood with some Christmas cheer!

Here’s an exclusive look at one of Garry’s cocktails… a fabulous El Gato Negro twist on an espresso martini. It was a firm favourite during our recent tastings!

Why not give Santa an extra special treat this year and give his sherry a little twist with this Christmas cracker… the El-spresso Martini

Glass: coupe
Method: shake
Garnish: coffee beans

  • 25ml El Presidente Spanish Brandy
  • 20ml Condensed Milk
  • 25ml Espresso coffee
  • 25ml Kahlua
  • 10ml Pedro Ximenez
  • 5ml Demerera Gomme (sugar syrup)
  • Spray Lagavulin (1ml)

Add all ingredients, shake hard over ice and strain. Pour into a coupe glass, garnish with coffee beans and serve immediately.

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