Spain is not only famous for its rich culture and tumultuous history but also the fabulous cuisine. Food has become an integral part of Spain and enjoying great Spanish dishes could not be missed on a trip to this country. Known as one of the top cuisines in the world, Spain has numerous dishes including recipes dating hundreds of years ago. Although listing best foods of Spain is not an easy work, I have chosen the most popular and delicious Spanish foods and write something about them. I hope the list will help you as much as possible to plan your trip to Spain, plan what to eat in the country.
Croquette is a small breadcrumbed fried food roll. Croquette is made from ground meat (beef, chicken, veal, or turkey), fish, ham, shellfish, cheese, vegetables or mashed potatoes, mixed with bechamel or brown sauce, coated white bread, eggs, onions, spices, herbs, wine, milk, beer, sometimes boiled eggs, mushrooms, or sauteed onions. The croquette is usually formed into cylinder, disk, or oval shape, then deep-fried until well-done inside and crispy on the outside.
Gambas al ajillo
Gambas al ajillo or Prawns in fried garlic consists of small peeled Spanish prawns, typically lightly cooked in a small clay dish of hot olive oil, roasted garlic, chillies over a high heat.
Tortilla Espanola or Spanish omelette is an omelette made with potatoes, eggs, sometimes onions and/or chives or garlic, fried in oil. Tortilla Espanola is usually served cold as an appetizer. A tasty snack, which is worth a try, is bocadillo sandwich consisting a wedge of Tortilla Espanola between bread.
Bocadillos are sandwich made with Spanish bread, filled with potatoes, cheese, ham, and pork loin. You can also try Bocadillos filled with Tortilla Espanola or fried squid.
Gazpacho or salmorejo is a zesty, chilled tomato soup containing fresh tomatoes, green peppers, cucumbers, garlic, onions, herbs, and vinegar. This soup is usually served as an appetizer, sometimes drunk from a glass or bowl.
Pisto or Spanish ratatouille is a stewed vegetable dish of tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, onions, garlic, and of course, olive oil.This is a perfect side dish, especially to meats.
Cured meats – jamon, chorizo, salchichón
Jamon is the Spanish word for ham, it refers to Spanish dry-cured ham. Jamon Iberico or Iberian ham made from black Iberian pigs is one of the most famous one you should not miss.
Chorizo is a type of fermented, cured, smoked pork sausage originated from Spain.
Salchichón is a Spanish summer sausage that is made by smoking, drying, cooking pork (or ox, horse, veal), seasoned with pepper, salt, nutmeg, garlic, oregano, filled into thick natural pork intestines.
Queso Manchego or Spanish Sheep Cheese has a unique flavor and texture which impress anyone from the very first bite. This cheese is worth trying.
Tapa is a snack or appetizer, sometimes combined to make a full meal in Spain. Tapa can be cold or hot. Common Spanish tapas include mixed cheese and olives, olives filled with anchovies or red bell pepper, meatballs made of beef and/or pork, allioli containing garlic, oil, salt, mayonnaise, chopitos, battered squid. Patatas bravas, consisting chunks of fried potatoes, eaten with sauces, is my first recommendation if you do not have chance to enjoy various tapas. Pimientos de padron – small green peppers fried in olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt is also worth trying.
Pulpo a la gallega
Pulpo a la gallega is a boiled octopus dish, flavored with paprika, olive oil, and crusty rock salt, traditionally cooked at fairs in copper cauldrons. This dish is usually served with potatoes.
Bean stews and salads
Spain is abundant of beans and dishes including stews and salads from beans. For example, Madrid’s cocido contains vegetables, cabbage, mix of sausages, and chickpeas. Fabada asturiana is a rich, hot, and heavy stew made with dried large white beans, shoulder of pork or bacon, black pudding, and often saffron.
Spain bean salads are made simply from diced tomatoes, onions, red and green peppers, garlic, a dressing from olive oil, vinegar, lemon.
Paella is a rice dish is worth trying in Spain. There are many versions of Paella including the traditional Valencian paella, seafood paella, mixed paella, vegetable paella, etc. The traditional Valencian version, which is believed to be the original recipe, consists of round white rice, meat (chicken, rabbit, snail or duck), green beans, saffron, rosemary, artichokes. Seafood paella omits beans and green vegetables contain seafood instead of meat. Mixed paella is a free-style combination of seafood, meat, vegetables, sometimes beans. Olive oil is used in cooking most of the Paella.
Suckling pig literally means a piglet fed on its mother’s milk. Suckling pig is a big part of Spanish tradition in families in which men prepare it over a fire while the women prep the rest of the food.
Alioli, Allioli or Aioli
Alioli, Allioli or Aioli or Olive Oil and Garlic Mayonnaise is a Catalan sauce made with olive oil, garlic, salt, and no eggs.
Fried milk is a classic Spanish dessert which is cool, firm, and milk-pudding. Large slices of bread are soaked in milk and sugar, and then lightly fried in a pan and topped with sugar and cinnamon or honey
Crema Catalana or Burnt cream, Trinity cream is a dessert consisting of a rich custard base, traditionally flavored with vanilla, topped with a texturally contrasting layer of hardened caramelized sugar, normally served slightly chilled.
Churros con chocolate
Churro is a sugary fried-dough pastry, usually dipped in hot chocolate.
Sangria is a light and bubbly Spanish champagne served at most of the bars and restaurants in the country.