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South Spain

In Spain eggs appear in many forms and at different times of the day. Huevos a la Flamenca is an egg casserole native to Andulasia, home of the flamenco dance. The eggs are baked atop a thick, spicy "sofrito" sauce.

Huevos a la flamenco

Baked eggs flamenco style


Pinchitos Morunos is an extremely popular tapa in Andalucia.  As the name suggests, skewers of meat (originally lamb, but nowadays mostly pork) are marinated in a mixture of Moorish spices and grilled over charcoal.  In this version, grapes provide a warm, sweet-tart smokiness, so right with the flavor of the meat.  The meat pieces should be slightly larger than the grapes to keep the fragile skin of the grapes away from the grill grates.

Pinchos Morunos

Spanish pork skewers


According to food historian Clifford Wright, cabbage was one of the most common foods on the Mediterranean table for more than a millennium.  And rolled or stuffed leaves, whether they are cabbage, grape, or lettuce, are found all over the Mediterranean.

Farcellets De Col

Stuffed cabbage leaves with pork


This Catalan dish is akin to ratatouille, the French dish that rummages around in the summer garden to combine eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, tomatoes and onions in a pot that simmers over low heat. The vegetables soften and collapse into one another, and the flavors meld.
Samfaina goes further, though: The ingredients are chopped into very small pieces, then cooked for several hours until the mixture is so thick and caramelized that it almost resembles a vegetable marmalade. It’s often used as a sauce for rabbit, chicken or salt cod, but it can also be a side dish unto itself. It is a time investment — lots of chopping to be done before hours of cooking and simmering — but your efforts will yield dinner for the rest of the week. The samfaina will taste better the next day, and it’s delicious hot or cold. Spoon it on a sautéed or grilled piece of fish, grilled sausages, poached eggs or a thick piece of toast.


Vegetable stew - Catalonian version of the French ratatouille


This lightly spiced, pretty, healthy and unusual fruit dessert from Southern Spain and Morocco comes together quickly for a simple and tasty sweet to end a meal.

Poached pears & prunes

Lightly spiced, pretty, healthy and unusual fruit dessert.


These eggplant fritters are a specialty of Córdoba in Andalucia. The combination of savory and sweet is sensational. These are best eaten as soon as they are done, but they are also very good reheated in the oven.

Eggplant fritters

Berenjenas con Miel


Croquettes are very popular Spanish tapas.  Often béchamel is the base, but here we use potatoes and bread them for a crunchy golden shell.  For the best flavor, use true Manchego made from ewes’ milk, and preferably cured, for these savory croquettes. Cured Manchego is drier than semi-cured and easier to grate.
Adapted from Spain and The World Table, The Culinary Institute of America.

Potato croquettes

Potato croquettes with manchego cheese and quince sauce


Bacalao, or dried salt cod, plays a prominent role in Spanish cuisine and is delicious and versatile.  Here, the salt cod, after an overnight soak, is flaked, formed into fritters and deep-fried.  Served solo, with lemon wedges or with a sidekick like garlicky aioli, these little fried nuggets are the perfect finger food.
Adapted from The Food of Spain, by Claudia Roden

Buñuelos de bacalao

Salt cod fritters with piquillo pepper sauce


There are many dishes, both fish and meat, that are described as al ajo arriero; what they all have
in common are vinegar, garlic, and paprika. In this version, the contrasting tastes of the sweet
vegetables and the dried cod are winning. This dish often calls for shredded cod, but in this
version, it is left whole. It will, however, break into large pieces as it cooks.
Adapted from Delicioso by Penelope Casas

Bacalao al Ajo Arriero

Dried Cod with Tomatoes and Peppers


Traveling around Europe, you might find that many countries claim to have invented the same thing. It’s always an age-old dispute that, despite having some evidence favoring one country over the other, still remains a hot topic of conversation. Crema catalana, the delicious Catalan custard dessert, and its French counterpart, creme brûlée are an example. To this day, people still debate about who came up with it first. Crema Catalana recipes, unlike their French counterpart, typically contain a starch thickener and are boiled before finishing, often without any baking at all. It has a refreshing citrus-infused creaminess with a hint of cinnamon and a crunchy layer of burned sugar – a classic Catalan dessert that’s hard to live without.

Crema Catalana

Crema catalana, the delicious Catalan custard dessert


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