Andalusia has always been a mix of different cultures and flavors. Despite preserving the authentic Spanish spirit, it also manages to keep diversity of cultures alive and presents to tourists the best each ethnicity has to offer. For instance, Andalusia is a true paradise for gourmands and fans of various cuisines. If you admire delicious seafood, spicy dishes, mouth-watering meat, and quality olive oil, you are strongly recommended to visit southern Spain and experience how it tastes.
Andalusia’s gastronomic icon, salmorejo was first cooked in Cordoba. A velvety tomato taste makes this soup such a popular dish on a hot sunny day! This soup is traditionally served with Iberian ham, boiled eggs, breadcrumbs and fragrant olive oil. It would not be an exaggeration to say that every meal in Andalusia may start with a bowl of salmorejo.
There would have been no jamón Ibérico without Iberian pigs that are happily bred in the loose atmosphere of the south of Spain. Now, this is serious: jamón comes under different names and labels, which provide the information on where the animals originated from and how they were fed. Served with breadsticks and sprinkled with olive oil, jamón is a delicacy, which is usually kept for a worthy occasion. The best variety of jamón Ibérico is made from black pigs and is called pata negra.
Huevos a la flamenca
Imagine an egg cassoulet with tomato sauce, now add some onions and garlic for stronger flavor. Not spicy enough? Take spicy red peppers and smoked paprika. Put slices of jamón and chorizo sausage on top. You’ve got an essentially Andalusian dish, huevos a la flamenca, which is traditionally served in a clay pot directly from the oven.
Migas is exquisite in its simplicity. Though being based on fried breadcrumbs, migas comes in many variations, including such ingredients as onion, chorizo, seafood, vegetables, peppers and jamón. It was borrowed from North African cuisines, but is now equally spread all over the region – much to the delight of both the locals and visitors.
Tortilla de patatas
This is an excellent idea for a light lunch. Tortilla de patatas contains soft potatoes, vegetables, goat cheese, and ham, which makes Spanish tortilla quite different from its Mexican counterpart. Tourists often buy tortilla de patatas as a quick snack to be eaten on the go, though its true culinary value is revealed only when consumed slowly and with pleasure.
Chocolate con Churros
Churros and a cup of coffee (or hot chocolate) is the best way to energize your body for the whole day. These are long sticks of fried dough which are dipped in a cup of hot liquid chocolate. Churros con chocolate are available in any shop or food stall in Andalusia, and for many locals this is a must-have for every day.
Flamenquines is a popular Andalusian dish, which can be confused with croquetas. This delicacy contains pork loin, jamón, vegetables and goat cheese. Cheese and ham are rolled in slices of pork fillets, covered in breadcrumbs and fried deep. Flamenquines is served with garlic sauce or mayonnaise and tastes great with cold beer.
Proximity to seas and oceans dictates clear gastronomic preferences. One can hardly imagine Andalusian cuisine without fried fish or shrimp, squids or cuttlefish. Seafood is sold everywhere. A common way to serve it is in little boxes or paper rolls usually accompanied by French fries or dried breadsticks.
Rabo de toro
Have you ever tasted bull’s tail? If you happen to be in Andalusia, do not miss this opportunity. The dish is called rabo de toro and can be found in nearly all restaurants and tapas bars. Pieces of bull’s tail are cooked slowly for a few hours in a thick sauce together with vegetables, olive oil, red wine, and spices. The meat literally melts in your mouth – so tender it is.