So off I went; garlic peeled and chopped, one onion peeled, cut from top to bottom then sliced in half moons, ditto the fennel, and the red pepper cut into strips. Now a generous quantity of olive oil into a deepish frying pan and gently fry the onion, fennel and pepper. Then add the garlic and slice the potatoes into rounds about half a centimetre thick, lay them on top of the other ingredients and then just cover in chicken stock (nothing fancy, just a stock cube dissolved in boiling water), pop a lid on and leave to simmer gently for half an hour. Finally, remove the lid, turn up the heat and reduce the liquid by about three quarters and then season with salt and pepper, serve and savour - and that is Patatas a lo Pobre, poor man's potatoes.
So, What DID I Cook At Home On Saturday Evening?
Going from the sublime to the pedestrian, on Saturday evening I looked at what was available that needed eating up, and then condiered how to turn it into a meal. The majority of what are considered traditional Spanish dishes are based in a history of poverty and frugality which comes in very useful on such occasions. I had a couple decent sized potatoes, some onions, garlic- obviously, half a red pepper and a fennel bulb. There were other things as well, of course, but these were the ingredients I chose.