The key to making Casa Montaña's signature fried potatoes is to poach and then fry them in olive oil.
In making this dish, cooks in Rioja traditionally crack the potatoes apart with their hands instead of cutting them, a process said to release just enough starch to thicken the sauce.
Mountains of these thick fries are hand-cut every day in Guia. Because they are fried only once (often, fries are cooked twice), they are lightly crunchy rather than supercrisp.
In Spain, potatoes are often boiled to cook the interior before being fried in olive oil.
The pleasantly bitter and floral flavor of saffron adds a complex taste to these otherwise ordinary roasted potatoes.
After it was founded in 1893, the Noriega Hotel quickly became the center of Bakersfield, California's lively Basque community. One of the regulars' favorite dishes is a zingy cod salad, served on family-style along with other Basque delicacies like pickled tongue and rabbit stew.
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