Spanish gastronomy has grown in popularity considerably in recent years and has become one of the most important in the world. However, typical Spanish cuisine has recipes that date back hundreds of years and has since included the use of fresh, local, and seasonal produce.
Each region has its own signature dishes and unique flavors, so feel free to sample each of the specialties this country has to offer. To make things easier for you, here are the most typical dishes of Spanish cuisine:
Paella is perhaps the most famous dish in Spanish gastronomy and the most requested. Originally, from the Valencian Community, it is prepared with rabbit meat, chicken, and, in its most traditional version, snails. It is cooked in a special pan, the paellera, over the heat of the embers, which allows obtaining the famous socarrat, grilled and crunchy rice that forms on the edges of the paellera.
The quintessential dish in the Spanish capital, Madrid, was originally eaten by the working class to weather the harsh winters of the interior. It is a stew made with chickpeas, vegetables, pork, bacon and sausages. This stew is traditionally served as a single dish and in two stages, first the broth resulting from the cooking, then the drained ingredients.
As the name suggests, this dish was born in Asturias, a region in the north of the country. Similar to cocido Madrileño, the flagship ingredient of this dish is the faba, a variety of white beans cooked for hours with other ingredients such as pork, bacon, chorizo, and morcilla or black pudding, for a delicious red-colored stew, perfect to hold all day in the face of the cold.
Gazpacho and Salmorejo
These two cold soups made from raw vegetables were born in Andalusia, a southern region known for these hot summers. Gazpacho, the better known of the two, is made with tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, onions, and vinegar. The salmorejo, typical of the city of Cordoba, is thicker and contains garlic, tomatoes, olive oil, and breadcrumbs, and can be served with diced ham, hard-boiled eggs, or toasted bread croutons.
The Spanish omelette is the queen of Spanish cuisine, consumed throughout the country and suitable for all tastes. It is the perfect example of the simplicity and delicacy of the country’s cuisine. Its simplest preparation consists of frying potatoes which will then be mixed with the beaten eggs and the whole will be cooked until the eggs take shape, more or less according to the preferences of the consumer. Usually, onions are also added to it, but this ingredient shares the opinions.
Pulpo a Feira
Also called pulpo a la gallega , this dish is typical of Galicia, a region of the Atlantic coast famous for its incredible seafood. It is a simple dish whose main ingredient will surely surprise you: a whole octopus cooked in a pan. in a copper saucepan until softened but still filling. Served in slices with a drizzle of olive oil, coarse salt, and paprika, the texture of the octopus is soft and melting and its flavor strong but at the same time delicate. It can also be served with boiled potatoes.
One of the Spanish dishes with multiple versions, las croquetas can be made with almost any ingredient, It is a kind of thick bechamel sauce, mixed with onion and whatever ingredient you want, kneaded in the form of small elongated balls, breaded with breadcrumbs, and then fried. The triumph as an aperitif in the form of tapas and we encourage you to taste all the flavors possible.
This popular dish is a great example of zero-waste cooking, as its main ingredient is hard bread. The bread is crumbled and baked with different ingredients such as meat, sausage, or vegetables. Traditionally eaten for breakfast for its high energy content, las Migas are now served for lunch, although they are cooked and enjoyed almost everywhere in Spain.
The cuisine of the Canary Islands has unique characteristics that differentiate it from peninsular cuisine. Its flagship dish: “crumpled potatoes” with a spicy mojo picón sauce. This is a variety of potatoes exclusive to the islands, boiled with lots of salt so that when cooked, a salty crust forms on their skin. They are served with a reddish spicy pepper-based sauce, the mojo . For a non-spicy version, order the dish with Mojo Verde, which is herbal.