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The meatballs for this dish, a version of one from Carmen Barrio Perez, may be made up to three days in advance. Serve with crusty bread, if you like.

Yield: serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • 24 whole blanched almonds, toasted
  • 6 cloves garlic (2 whole, 4 finely chopped)
  • 3 ripe medium tomatoes, halved, seeded, flesh grated, peels discarded
  • 13 cup roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 23 cup milk
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Olive oil (preferably Spanish) for frying, plus 6 tbsp.
  • 2 medium yellow onions, thinly sliced
  • 12 large head-on shell-on shrimp
  • 1 12 lb. cleaned squid, cut into 3⁄4″ slices
  • 34 cup white wine
  • 2 cups beef stock, preferably homemade
  • 23 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 3 (1″-thick) slices baguette (1 toasted)

Instructions

  1. Purée almonds, whole garlic, one-third of the tomatoes, toasted bread slice, half the parsley, and 1⁄2 cup water in a blender to make a seasoning paste called a picada; set aside. Tear remaining bread into pieces; combine in a bowl with milk. Let soak for 15 minutes; break up bread with fingers. Add half the chopped garlic, remaining parsley, beef, pork, and salt and pepper; mix well. Shape meat mixture into 1 1⁄2″ balls. Pour oil into a large deep skillet to a depth of 1⁄4″ and heat over medium-high heat. Working in batches, fry meatballs, turning occasionally, until golden brown all over, 5–7 minutes per batch. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate; set aside. Discard oil and reserve skillet.
  2. Heat 2 tbsp. oil in reserved skillet over medium heat. Add remaining chopped garlic and onions; cook until golden brown, 16–18 minutes. Transfer onion mixture to a plate. Increase heat to medium-high; heat another 2 tbsp. oil. Add shrimp and cook, turning once, until almost cooked, about 2 minutes. Transfer shrimp to another plate. Heat remaining 2 tbsp. oil in skillet; add squid and cook until just cooked through, about 2 minutes. Transfer squid to a plate. Add remaining tomatoes and wine and cook, stirring occasionally, until thick, 7–8 minutes. Stir in reserved picada and onion mixture; cook for 2 minutes more. Reduce heat to medium; stir in stock, peas, meatballs, squid, and salt and pepper. Top with shrimp and cook until heated throughout, about 5 minutes more.

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