Spanish Food

If you have been to one of the big resorts in Spain on holiday, you will realise that you could holiday there a week and eat only English or mainstream food like burgers pizza, pasta etc. There is a time and place for all foods, but Spain has a wonderful rich cuisine and it would be a shame not to try it at all.

Paella is the first dish every one thinks about when they think of Spanish food. Essentially it is a rice dish flavoured with Saffron, but there are a number of different variations of it. It can be a meat paella with chicken / rabbit or a seafood one with mussels prawns and squid . As you might have seen on some of the cookery programmes from Spain, when there are big local communal events, quite often they will involve making a massive paella for the whole town to eat.

Tapas is as much a cultural ritual as it is a cuisine. The Spanish love to sit, relax with a glass of wine or more usually sherry (jerez - which tend to be a Fino or Manzanilla dry sherry rather than our Christmas tipple) and communally eat some tasty snacks. The snacks are an assortment of vegetables, seafood or meats served cold or hot cooked in variety of ways including deep frying. Good examples include Calamari (squid), prawns, olives.

A number of European countries, Britain included like their ham and cheese. Spain worships their ham and go to great lengths to make some of the best in the World. Serrano ham is a cured ham similar to Italian Prosciutto ham, but there are some luxury versions including Iberico ham, where the pig is only fed acorns and so the ham is wonderful, but unfortunately very expensive. The main Spanish cheese you will see is Manchego which comes from La Mancha. It is a hard cheese like cheddar, but with a delicious subtle flavour not to be missed. It also goes really well with the ham.

There are so many other foods that we have not mentioned, but all we would say is give it a go, especially if you are in a small restaurant where the locals eat.