Recipe: Nacho del Campo's saffron artichoke tempura

Saffron tempura artichoke
Fusion tapas: Spain crosses paths with Japan in Nacho's tasty dish

Camino executive chef Nacho del Campo borrows from Japanese cuisine.

This summer, to bring the excitement and flair of Madrid cuisine to the UK, The Telegraph has partnered with the city’s number-one beer brand Mahou to explore exciting new flavour combinations for 21st-century tastes.

Michelin-starred chef and presenter Mark Sargeant asked four of the UK's top tapas talents to come up with perfect pairings.

For the second of his challenges, the chefs must incorporate an international element to create fusion tapas suited to the five-star flavours of Mahou Cinco Estrellas.

Nacho del Campo is head chef of Camino, a microchain of modern tapas bars and restaurants dotted across London from Kings Cross to Bankside.

The slice is right: Spain crosses paths with Japan in Nacho's fusion dish

Having lived in Madrid and worked in other foodie hotspots including San Sebastián, Bilbao and Catalunya, Nacho is proud to draw on culinary traditions from all over Spain and beyond.

“Spain crosses paths with Japan in my fusion dish. Artichoke hearts and Iberico ham are very Spanish ingredients. I present them in a tempura batter made with a dash of Mahou to keep the texture light.”

The artichokes are served with slices of ham, saffron and mini salad leaves.

Mark Sargeant was bewitched by the contrasting sensations of the “cool, refreshing Mahou” with the “saltiness of the ham and the warmth of the deep fried artichokes.”  He concludes: “The balance is just right. I really, really love this.”

Saffron artichoke tempura

Serves 4


  • 12 small violet artichokes
  • Court-boullion, approx. 5lt
  • 100g plain flour
  • 50g potato starch
  • Pinch saffron filaments
  • 60g Iberico ham
  • Salt and pepper
  • 200ml Mahou

To serve

  • Iberico ham
  • Handful of fresh pistachios, roasted
  • Watercress


  1. Clean and prepare the artichokes using a sharp paring knife, removing the internal hair and the hard outer layers. Bring a pan of court-bouillon to a gentle simmer before adding the prepared artichokes and cooking for approximately 12-15 minutes (making sure they are still a bit firm). Cut the artichokes into 4 to 6 pieces and pat dry with a clean cloth.
  2. Mix 50g of the flour with the potato starch and add a pinch of salt and the saffron. Slowly pour in the cold Mahou while continuously whisking to avoid any lumps in the batter. Whisk until the batter becomes similar consistency to loose whipping cream. Dust the artichokes with a bit of flour before dipping and coating them in the tempura butter. Deep-fry in hot vegetable oil for 2-3 minutes until golden - the artichokes will rise to the surface when ready. Once cooked, remove from the fryer and place on kitchen paper to soak up any excess oil.
  3. To serve, lay the artichokes on the plate along with thin slices of Iberico ham. Sprinkle with roasted, cracked pistachios and delicately dress with a little watercress.

To make the dish for yourself, get your ingredients at #perfectpairing #mahou