A few days ago I was in the grocery store, standing in the spice aisle and staring fixedly at the aromatics in front of me. It had entered my mind that I was dangerously low on pimentón, or smoked Spanish paprika. I am incurably addicted to the stuff, and this thought unnerved me to such an extent that I spent a good five minutes staring at these bottles of spices like a mental patient, scrutinizing each one to make sure that if there was pimentón to be found I wouldn't miss it.
There wasn't, and when I got home I found that my supply was indeed perilously low. So I freaked out a bit. But then I figured the faster I use it, the more incentive I have to get more. So I exhausted what remained by revisiting a recipe I made last year for March Spanish, merluza a la gallega.
Traditionally this dish from Galicia, in Spain's northwest corner, is made with hake steaks, which are fun to say but hard to find. As such, you'll likely have to find a substitute, and any white fish fillet will do the trick. The fish is baked over a bed of thinly sliced potatoes, flavored with garlic, parsley, and (of course) pimentón. It's good, simple, rustic fare -- a hallmark of Spanish cuisine. If you have a nice, shallow casserole dish, you can prepare and serve it all in the same vessel, which makes for great presentation and easier clean-up.
Recipe (from Penelope Casas' The Food and Wines of Spain) after the jump.