What is a tapas? I probably should explain that I am not a hard-liner when it comes to tapas. I define tapas more as a style of eating than as particular recipes. They are an informal way of sharing small dishes. Build yourself a menu of lots of different flavors, some hot and some cold, look for a balance, pour some good Spanish wine, or maybe make a sangria, and invite your friends over for a tapas party. Migas is also excellent with fried eggs.–José Andrés
LC This Little Piggy Note
This recipe for migas, essentially leftover bread, calls for a couple of kinds of pork. The chorizo is nonnegotiable. The salted pork belly, however, comes with all sorts of asterisks. You essentially want to convey some sort of salted porkiness with this ingredient, so if you can’t find the belly, then salt pork or pancetta or fatback or even a lesser amount of bacon will do the trick quite nicely.
- 1 pound, 2 ounces day-old white bread cut into cubes (not as big as what you’d use for stuffing, not as small as what you’d use to coat a cutlet, but somewhere in between)
- Salt to taste
- 1 1/4 cups olive oil
- 7 ounces semi-salted pork side (belly), rind removed, pork cut into small cubes
- 7 ounces chorizo casing remove, sausage sliced
- 3 cloves garlic very thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- Place the bread cubes in a bowl, add 2 tablespoons water and a little salt and combine. Cover with a cloth and let stand for 30 minutes.
- Heat the oil in a large, heavy-base pan or a large skillet or frying pan over medium heat. Add the salted pork and pan-fry until browned at the edges and warmed through. Remove using a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Pan-fry the chorizo in the same oil until warmed through and crisp at the edges, then remove using the slotted spoon and set aside.
- Finally, pan-fry the garlic in the same oil until golden brown. Add the bread mixture and the paprika and continue cooking for 15 minutes, stirring frequently so that the bread “crumbs” stay loose and become crisp. Combine with the chorizo and salted pork and serve at once.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
Although my migas doesn’t look much like their migas, boy, does my kitchen smell like an adventure! It makes me think of that old line, “She has a great personality,” and in this case, she does! I encourage anyone to try this and let us all know how close it comes to the recipe. I used a piece of salt pork—so I didn’t salt the bread and water mix as indicated in the recipe for fear of too much salt. I removed the rind from the piece of salt pork before I cubed it, but I also threw in a small piece with the rind still on to see what the difference might be. That was a lot of crunch! Everything I made was really crisp and crunchy, but we liked what we had. I thought that using some might be fun for next time. And with the leftovers? I’m going to stuff the migas into a chicken to roast to see how that works out. Substituting some local form of sausage for the chorizo might be a good, local adaptation of this recipe, and if I can get ahold of some fatback, that’s worth a try, too. This recipe was a novelty for me. If I hadn’t had the picture to look at, I don’t think I’d have tried it.
Originally published July 12, 2010