The other moon of Valencia

La Otra Luna de Valencia
Quique Dacosta Restaurante
Chef: Quique Dacosta
Country: España
City: 03700 Dénia (Alicante)
Address: Las Marinas, km. 3.
00 34 965784179

Quique Dacosta is one of the chefs with the finest taste, not only of the palate, but of the scene, that exist in the gastronomic universe. Lover of nature, architecture, painting… he has shaped his style most recently taking inspiration from landscapes. A product of all those passions is this architectural, landscape work–a symbiosis of two inspirations. First, in 2006, he created a dish entitled “La Opera de Calatrava”, which was born from the admiration he feels for the majestic work by Calatrava on the “Ciudad de las Ciencias y las Artes” building in Valencia, Spain. As an evolution of that first creation, he added a new vision, this time of a summer night… as if he had been under the influence of the “luna de Valencia” (the moon of Valencia), a new artistic expression surfaced: “The Other Moon of Valencia”, in black and white, like life itself. And with the elegance of those colors and the originality that characterizes his work, he captures this luminous, edible landmark. A stunning composition of the landscape, using nature itself as the protagonist: the squid and its ink. Later came the fantasy, technique, refined taste… in short, the art to strengthen the innate delicacy of the dish. Make that which is good, beautiful, and it will be all that more appetizing, or so the saying goes. Here is his “lunar” vision that exalts the squid to the heavens above… or the culinary fantasy that allows us to dip our spoon into the moon, the full moon, and taste it for ourselves.

The Recipe

Another moon in Valencia

Squid strips:

  • 100 g fresh squid ink
  • 100 g Frantoio extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 g salt
  • Squid, cleaned.
  • Squid ink and rice “sand”:
  • 5 l. squid water
  • 1500 g senia rice
  • 20 g fresh squid ink
  • 8 g powdered silver

1st step:

  • 1.3 l octopus and squid stock
  • 20 g muscovado sugar
  • Smoked salt

2nd step:

  • 250g octopus and squid stock
  • 2.2 g agar-agar.
  • 2 l mild olive oil
  • 2 l ice

Lunar globes:

  • 600 g water
  • 80 g sugar
  • 6 g alginate
  • 2 gas cartridges

3rd step:

Two steps of the baking process.

Moon filling:

  • 1.1 l pearl stock
  • 0.8 g xanthan gum (to texturize)
  • 8 sheets, large white gelatin

Squid water:

  • 800 g fresh squid
  • 1 l mineral water


  • 250g squid water (previous preparation).
  • 3.3 g methylcellulose
  • 3 gelatin sheets, 2 g each



Squid strips:

Remove the ink from the fresh squid. Blend and strain.
Spread the mixture out between two silpat mats and place in a drying over at 80ºC/176ºF.
Once dry, move to a Thermomix or food processor and emulsify with the olive oil.
Salt to taste, mildly.
Slice the clean squid thinly and marinate in its ink oil.
At assembly time, warm the squid slices and arrange over the squid water meringue.
Squid ink and rice “sand”:
Bring the water to a boil. Add the rice, sprinkling it into the water gradually, stir well and cook for 50 minutes.
When finished, salt to taste, add the squid ink and blend until acquiring a fine paste.
Once blended, using a wooden spatula, mix in the powdered silver.

Spread out the paste between two cooking sheets and dry in the over with the vent open at 80ºC/176ºF. Once it is well dried, store in a cool, dry place until frying. Fry in extra virgin olive oil of the Picual variety, at 180ºC/356ºF.
Quickly remove from the oil and place onto a tray lined with absorbent paper. By doing this, they will drain and the slices will not be impregnated by the oil thanks to the proper temperature of the oil and the absorbent paper.
Once cool, using two wide spatulas over the paper, chop vigorously until obtaining a fine, granulated product.


Prepare the stock by reducing it 25% and adding the smoked salt and muscovado sugar.
2nd step:
Use 250 g of broth for the pearls, adding 2.2 g of agar-agar.
Keep lukewarm in a pot.
Keep the oil cold in a large stainless steel bowl over, placed over another larger bowl filled with ice and water. With the help of a small syringe, add the stock, drop by drop, to the oil. Continue to gently stir the pearls that will have formed for around five minutes.
Strain to obtain the squid ink pearls.
Store in a small, airtight container until serving time. Remove and heat the necessary amount for each plate (about 16 g of pearls).
Lunar globes:
1st step:
Mix 200 g of water with the Sugar and Alginate and blend until obtaining an homogenous dough.
Gradually add the remaining 400 g of water (very slowly).

Place the mixture in a siphon and cool in water and ice. Insert the gas cartridges and keep cold before continuing to the second step.

2nd step:

Chloride bath:

Mix the chloride and water together. Use a deep, wide tray to make the globes.
3rd step:
3 liters of mineral water on a wide tray.
Using a ring, prepare the globes.
Place a small amount of the liquid in the ring from the 1st step (in the siphon). Move to the chloride bath to make it coagulate and give it the surface film. After six minutes, place in the mineral water bath.
Remove from the water and place onto absorbent paper, without touching them, for a further five minutes.
Brush with a 1x1 syrup and place in a confection oven.


Two steps of the baking process.

120ºC/248ºF for 40 minutes. Maximum ventilation on the oven.
Next, without ever opening the oven door, bake for 180 minutes at 80ºC/176ºF with minimum ventilation.

Keep the preparation hot on the table to avoid it taking on any moisture.

Moon filling:

Texturize by mixing the xanthan gum with the liter of pearl stock.
While still hot, dissolve the gelatin sheets, leave to sit and gel on a large tray that will produce a jellied broth of 1 cm.

Squid water:

Clean the squid well, removing all skin and any parts inside. Chop into 2x2 cm pieces.
Place in a sous-vide bag with the liter of mineral water. Close the bag and place in a Roner for 4 hours.
Remove and cool in an ice water bath.
Remove from the bath and set aside.


Blend 200 g of water with the methylcellulose, cool to 3ºC/37.4ºF, warm to 14ºC/57.2ºF, and place in the Kitchen to foam.
Meanwhile, dissolve 3 gelatin sheets in 50 g of squid water at 45ºC/113ºF, cool to 39ºC/102.2ºF, and incorporate the meringue, little by little, in a continuous ribbon.
Whip on the highest speed in the Kitchen for approximately 8 minutes, until obtaining a dense, meringue texture.

Place the squid water meringue in a pastry bag and, using a stainless steel mold 6x6 cm and 4 cm high, cover the base and add the moon filling, then cover completely with the meringue. Bake for 6 minutes at 130ºC/266ºF.