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(Fernando Morales/The Globe and Mail)
(Fernando Morales/The Globe and Mail)

Explore the flavours of Spain with this menu Add to ...

Madrid Fusion is an intense, innovative symposium that takes place every year in the Spanish capital. Iconic Spanish and international chefs – South American chefs were part of the mix this year – take the stage to discuss new trends while performing mind-blowing cooking demos. And gastro indulgence was everywhere. I ate fat, rich anchovies and mountains of Iberian and serrano ham.

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One of the major topics I found most intriguing was making vegetables the focal point of dishes. (A small amount of protein is often included.) This is a new journey for Spanish chefs. Joan Roca, the chef-owner of El Celler can Joan Roca, the 2013 winner of the San Pellegrino best restaurant in the world award, talked about the benefits of having a botanist on staff to help curate products from the soil.

A meal at Coque, Mario Sandoval’s cutting-edge restaurant, produced the strangest dish I had during my four days at the conference: hare with blood gravy served on top of a small gun case with a bullet in it. Although the dish was interesting, the presentation was really over the top. Sandoval, who calls himself an archeologist of flavour, is researching heirloom produce hoping to bring back some of the tasty vegetables that have all but disappeared.

The following dishes will give you a hint of how flavourful Spanish food can be.

Patatas Bravas

Chicken Chilindron

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