Vegetables β€” Verduras

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I love our city markets. The colour, the bustle, the noise and the stands filled with fresh fruit and vegetables remind me of living in Spain where people still shop daily at the market. There, freshness and quality are not just respected but almost a law. Any vendor transgressing with less than the best vegetables is quickly rebuked in a very public manner and may I say Spanish mamas have tongues sharper than razor clams.
Freshness and ripeness is essential for all the food we make at MoVida. We will never put a tomato dish on the menu unless the tomatoes are absolutely perfect. Good, fresh, ripe food tastes so much better and makes you feel alive. It’s worth the effort of going to the market or local greengrocer and buying the best vegetables that are in season. Asparagus in winter? It’s probably from Chile or Thailand and won’t be nearly as good as really fresh local spring asparagus.
Unlike the Italians, the Spanish were never seduced by the ease of using tinned tomatoes or concentrates. To the Spanish, it has to be fresh tomatoes, or none at all if they are not up to standard.
For the recipes in this book, it is assumed that vegetables are of a medium size and have been washed and peeled before use, unless stated otherwise. For an easy method to peel and seed tomatoes, see below.

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