A 'Boston-Style' Boiled Dinner en Español
Monastrell, an excellent restaurant attached to the Hospes Amerigo Hotel in the southeastern Spanish Mediterranean city of Alicante, is known for its tradition-based contemporary cooking. Chef-owner María José San Román, however, likes to surprise her clientele occasionally, and on Nov. 29 she's doing it with a "Mariscada [seafood feast] 'Boston Style.'" Everything, she warns diners, will be "boiled and served directly on the table." The food will be, she adds, "in the American style but very Alicante because it will rely on the best products of our region."
On the menu: Atlantic lobster (as opposed to the clawless Mediterranean variety), red shrimp, clams, mazorca de maïz (corn-on-the-cob to you), whole steamed artichokes, scallions, red potatoes, and sausage, along with fresh lemons, baguettes, and five sauces: barbecue, cocktail sauce, mayonnaise, vinaigrette, and hot sauce.
One aspect of the €40 ($55) feast that might give New Englanders pause is the dessert: helado de azafrán — saffron ice cream. San Román, as it happens, is an expert on that pricey spice, serving as a spokesperson for the Spanish saffron industry and shipping her own line of saffron to gourmet stores around the globe. Probably even to Boston.