Estrella Finalist: Bellota (+recipe)

Have you enjoyed an icy cold Estrella Damm this summer? If so, you're up with the play because the beer of Barcelona has only just become readily available here in New Zealand. To celebrate, Bite ran a tapas competition and asked the bars and restaurants who serve it to share with us their favourite Estrella tapa match. They narrowed it down a very fine field of finalists and we will share one of their top five each day online, along with a gallery of other contenders.
Prawn and fish stuffed piquillo peppers from Bellota. Photo / NZH
Prawn and fish stuffed piquillo peppers from Bellota. Photo / NZH

Have you enjoyed an icy cold Estrella Damm this summer? If so, you're up with the play because the beer of Barcelona has only just become readily available here in New Zealand. To celebrate Bite ran a tapas competition and asked the bars and restaurants who serve it to share with us their favourite Estrella tapa match. We narrowed down a very fine field to 12 finalists, which we tested and tasted. You will find the recipes from all 12 finalists on foodhub.co.nz; the top five, we present to you here. The recipes have all been judged and adapted by the Bite team to suit the home cook so go on, get the Estrella in (it's available at all liquor retailers) and get set to impress.

Bellota

One of the original tapas bars in Auckland, Peter Gordon's Bellota prides itself on authentic Spanish fare. The monkfish and prawn-stuffed piquillo peppers, created by head chef Ernest Pietx, are on the menu and they are popular with regulars frequenting this atmospheric Skycity venue.

Prawn and fish stuffed piquillo peppers

Makes and serves 2

• 1 small-medium white fleshed onion, peeled and diced
• 2 tsp olive oil
• 70g boneless monkfish, diced
• 50g peeled prawns, diced
• 2 tsp cream
• 2 canned piquillo peppers, any seeds gently scraped
• 15g manchego cheese, grated

Sauce
• 3 piquillo peppers, sliced
• 3 Tbsp cream


1. Heat oven to 200C. Sauté the onion in the olive oil over medium heat until just beginning to caramelise. Add the monkfish and prawns and cook for a few minutes until cooked through, stirring several times. Add the cream and cook until fully reduced. Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.

2. Gently stuff the piquillo peppers with the mixture then sit them in an ovenproof dish with their peaks facing up like upended icecream cones.

3. For the sauce, bring the sliced piquillo peppers and cream to a boil, then simmer for a minute. Puree and pass through a sieve.

4. Pour the sauce over the stuffed piquillo peppers and sprinkle with the grated cheese. Bake in the oven until the cheese is crunchy.

The judges say: Yum! The small fast-flowing bubbles of Estrella Damm give it a creamy mouth feel and this simple, delicate dish with its dash of cream make a perfect partner.

Check out some of the other Estrella Damm tapas competion competitors

Note: Part of the judging process was to choose recipes that were suitable to the home cook. The recipes from our 12 semi-finalists have all been tested and some slightly adapted to suit. See all 12 recipes on foodhub.co.nz





For more about Estrella Damm and tapas visit their website here.

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