You can read the article in the newspaper El Periódico about our cuisine. A text that you can also find on its website.
The bourgeois from Barcelona (the ones that grew up around Paseo de Gracia) knew why the first level of a building corresponded to the main floor. Its great dimensions, the interior terraces that reached the status of small gardens, they were the natural space for the enjoyment of the richest owner, exactly the one who lived in El Principal.
In this environment a product kitchen was created. The cooks, two per family, did not throw out a fridge, but rather fresh ingredients bought daily in nearby markets. A gastronomy that united rural traditions with bourgeois tastes, configuring a style that I like to call ‘Eixample cuisine’ (Eixample is the neighbourhood where it belongs). Although the prophets of the culinary revolution announced that this type of flavors would sink into oblivion due to the contributions of globalization, this has not been the case.
Joan Ferré, in El Principal del Eixample, gives us back this kitchen of remarkable refinement that it likes to define as the sum of memory, land and tradition. Ferré is a wise chef, read, able to delve into medieval recipes from the ‘El Llibre del Coch’ (the book of cooking), whose first edition in Catalan dates from 1447. In other words, is the oldest form that we have news, before the tomato and other wonders that came from the New World.
Ferré recovered the spicy camelina sauce. Now it goes in other directions, those of the affordable kitchen, that of the rice with hare in hunting season, with cod, which is a virtuous, Christian and Lent thing, or with some peas so toned that it is worth trying their description. Coming from the Maresme, it gives them a light cooking with tender onion and its mint tip, a matter of keeping alive the spring that arrives.
Instead of adding the cuttlefish to the usual way, in a long cooking that ends up distorting both ingredients, skip the tiny cephalopods to the gross, so as not to lose the sip of sea that the sepietas have. Once to the point it incorporates them to the peas and it serves immediately, punctuated with a caviar of oil that takes us to the century in which we live.