The biggest thing you’ll notice about Spanish cuisine is that there is a huge emphasis on freshness, regional dishes, and most of all, seafood and produce. These elements combine to make up one of the tastiest cuisines out of any country in the world! Here are 5 MUST TRY dishes:
Though Spain has many different rice dishes, paella is by far one of the most popular and traditional Spanish dishes.
Gastronomic experts and culinary guides define the Casa Elías paella as the best paella in Spain. Rice with rabbit and snails, herbs, and slowly cooked on firewood.
This authentic Spanish dish is usually served cold and made of ripe tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, bread, peppers, and cucumber. It’s not simply tomato soup but the ingredients are blended together until smooth and makes for a perfect dish in the summer.
3. PATATAS BRAVAS
A staple among the small dishes that make up a classic tapas menu, patatas bravas — “brave potatoes” — is named for its spicy sauce, rare in a land that generally shuns fiery food.
The potatoes are cubed and shallow fried and served the same everywhere. The sauce can come in any number of ways, from spicy ketchup to garlic mayonnaise with a dusting of pimiento (smoked paprika), or both.
4. JAMON IBERICO
You will see giant legs of jamón serrano and jamón ibérico hanging in local tapas bars and shops. Spain is the world’s number one producer of dry cured ham and is still made using century-old techniques. Jamon Iberico or Iberian ham is made from black Iberian pigs, while Serrano ham covers most other varieties.
5. PIMIENTOS DE PADRON
A common dish on tapas menus, pimientos de Padron are green peppers that hail originally from the town of that name in Galicia, in Spain’s lush, rainy northwest.
Pimientos de Padron are fried and served with a deep sprinkling of salt. Though generally sweet and mild, their fame stems from the fact that the occasional pepper will be fiery hot — lending a Russian Roulette element of surprise to eating them.
Needless to say there are many more dishes to experience in Spain. Buen Provecho!
For further information, please contact the Tourist Office of Spain www.spain.info