José Pizarro is the acclaimed Spanish chef behind José and Pizarro in Bermondsey as well as José Pizarro in Broadgate Circle and at The Swan Inn in Esher. The chef was at the forefront of prestigious London restaurants adapting to life under lockdown in the release of his Finish-at-Home boxes. Pizarro told Brummell he developed them because Spanish food doesn’t travel that well when cooked. Finishing at home allows for the incredibly fresh flavours and textures one expects from Spanish cuisine. Pizarro and his team have developed and refined the most delicious dishes that are easy to finish in your own kitchen, including tapas, mains and desserts. The menu changes frequently so chances are, when you’ve ordered one box you’ll want to order another as soon as it’s released.
The meal kit
Brummell tried Pizarro’s Basque menu to finish at home, which like all of the restaurant’s boxes included four tapas, a main to feed two and a dessert. To start were a set of Pizarro’s signature croquetas, delivered in a cute egg box; a bacalao tortilla, roast red peppers stuffed with cod and olives with anchovies. To follow was a hake in salsa verde, with baked basque cheesecake to finish.
How many does it feed?
The kit arrived in a large box with everything you need divided into separate containers. Unusually for a restaurant kit, Pizarro even provide you with the oil for cooking the croquetas. For dishes that need it, Pizarro also sometimes provides cooking equipment like a paella pan – every detail of your convenience and enjoyment has been carefully considered.
The croquetas took the most preparation, which was simply just to fry them for a few minutes on each side. Everything comes ready to eat or ready to cook – the tortilla needed around 10 minutes in the oven and the hake was delivered in a bag to pop into boiling water for 12 minutes. The cheesecake came in a bag, which was simply poured into a provided terracotta dish to pop in the oven. Everything is extremely simple and well thought out and what prep there is to do is fun and satisfying.
As you’d expect from Pizarro, the food is flavoursome, moreish and utterly delicious. The tapas provided a fantastic mix of fresh flavours of olives and anchovies mixed with the comforting croquetas and soft, irresistible tortilla. The hake was perfectly seasoned and portioned, while the cheesecake provided the perfect finish. It’s a real feast that leaves anyone lucky enough to eat it truly satisfied and happy, and even more excited about being able to visit José when the world reopens to combine food that fantastic with the warm welcome of one of the chef’s restaurants.
£95 for a box to serve two people.
One of the most successful and wonderfully put together restaurant boxes available, José Pizarro’s Finish-at-Home boxes are the ideal remedy to anyone craving restaurant food or suffering from lockdown fatigue. Also, the menu changes regularly so it’s something you can keep coming back to. If you want to really treat the most important woman in your life, Pizarro has a Mother’s Day box available to order until 11 March.
Read Brummell’s interview with chef Jose Pizarro here