Monday, 7 May 2018
SPAIN: Andalusian Cuisine
Andalusian cuisine is the cuisine of Andalusia, Spain.
Important dishes include gazpacho, fried fish often called pescaito frito in the local vernacular, the jamones of Jabugo, Valle de los Pedroches and Trevelez, and the wines of Jerez, particularly sherry.
Frying in Andalucian cuisine is dominated by the use of olive oil that is produced in the provinces of Jaen, Cordoba, Seville, and Granada.
Malaga, Almeria, Cadiz and Huelva produces olive oil too, but in smaller amounts.
The foods are dredged in flour a la andaluza or meaning only flour, without egg or other ingredients, but may include flour from the chickpea especially for use in batters.
They are then fried in a large quantity of hot olive oil.
With five coastal provinces, the consumption of fish and shellfish is rather high: white shrimp from the Bay of Cadiz; prawns; murex; anchovies; baby squid; cuttlefish; bocas de la Isla, a dish found in San Fernando that uses a local crab that can regenerate its claw; flounder; etc.
Andalucian cuisine includes also some unusual seafood, like ortiguillas, sea anemones in batter.
Andalucian desserts are heavily influenced by Arabic medieval Andalucian cuisine.
Notable dishes include pestinos a deep-fried pastry bathed in honey, alfajores, amarguillos a form of almond macaroons from Medina Sidonia, the polvorones almond cookies of Estepa, lard bread, wine doughnuts, torrijas and Calentitos.
Pescado frito or fried fish in Spanish and Judeo-Spanish, also called Pescaito frito or fried little fish in Andalusian dialect, is a traditional dish from the Southern coast of Spain.
The dish typically found in Andalusia, but also in Catalonia, Valencia, the Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands.
Pescado frito is also consumed as a delicacy in inland Spain, being very common in the inland Andalusian provinces of Seville and Cordoba.
It is also very common throughout the Mediterranean Basin and is found in Provence and Roussillon, France and in the coastal regions of Italy where the most common variant using salt cod fillets is known as filetto di baccala.
In Greece where various fish like Mediterranean sand smelt, European anchovy, cod, common sole, greater amberjack and picarel are used.
It was also eaten by the Romans in ancient Rome.
It is made by coating the fish, usually a white fish in flour and deep-frying it in olive oil, then sprinkling it with salt as the only seasoning.
It is usually served hot, freshly fried, and can be eaten as an appetizer.
For example with a beer or wine, or as the main course. Usually, it is served with fresh lemon, which is squeezed over the fish or occasionally in escabeche.
It is also a traditional Shabbat fish dish, usually cod originating amongst the 16th century Andalusian Jews of Spain and Portugal.
The deep-frying of the fish in vegetable oil makes it crisp and light even when eaten cold, and it is a favourite dish for the late breakfast or lunch after synagogue services on Saturday morning.
There is a general belief that pescado frito was possibly an inspiration for the English fish and chips, brought to England by Spanish Jews.
Sephardim began to settle in England in small numbers in the 16th century, and in larger numbers after Oliver Cromwell lifted the formal ban in the 1650s.
The wines of Jerez also known as sherry are famous the world over, praised even by William Shakespeare.
Other standouts are the manzanilla of Sanlucar de Barrameda, the white wines of Cadiz, paxarete a sherry derivative, wines of Condado in Huelva, wines of Montilla-Moriles in Cordoba, wines of Malaga, and la tintilla of Rota.
The liquors of the region are also popular, included the anis made in Rute, and in Cazalla de la Sierra, and the rums from the Tropical Coast of Granada (Motril).
Typical Andalucian dishes include pescaito frito or fried fish, gazpacho, Cordoban salmorejo, pringa, oxtail, jamon iberico or Iberian ham, prepared olives, alboronia, polea, anise, and various kinds of wine.
These, including sherries - fino, manzanilla, oloroso, Pedro Ximenez, amontillado which are undoubtedly the most exported and most widely available of all Spanish wines, as well as Malaga wine.
The wine from Montilla, while similar to sherry, is not technically a sherry, but gives its name to amontillado, meaning in the style of Montilla.
Some other Andalucian dishes include:
- Salmorejo (Cordoba)
- Flamenquin (Cordoba)
- Ajoblanco (Malaga-Cadiz)
- Gazpacho andaluz or Andalucian Gazpacho
- Pipirrana (Jaen)
- Habas con calzones
- Huevos a la flamenca
- Alcauciles rellenos (Cadiz)
- Migas de Harina
- Gazpachuelo (Malaga)
- Bienmesabe o adobo
- Ajo harina (Jaen)
- Soldaditos de Pavia
- Patatas a lo pobre
- Tortilla de patatas
- Tortillitas de camarones (Cadiz)