10 Best Spanish Dishes
10 best Spanish dishes? Well, if you believe everything you read in the papers or see on the Internet, you no doubt thinks Paella is tops. Contrary to popular belief, there are thousands of great Spanish dishes other than Paella.
For the record; “Paella” is actually the pan it is cooked in, the traditional dish is simply called “Arroz” or “Rice”. Mind you, I suppose every nation gets labels it doesn’t deserve. The English are stereotyped as just eating roast beef, the Irish spuds, the Scots porridge, god help the french and their snails.
Andalucia, where I live, has many great dishes. I hope to, in the course of writing on this blog, introduce you to some great Spanish dishes from the Malaga area iof Andalucia. Especially inland and up the mountains way.
Roasted Spanish Dishes.
I’ll not put the top 10 best Spanish dishes in any order, I keep changing my mind. What I will do, week in, week out, is post what I have been chowing down on.
Cochinillo (Suckling Pig)
This is suckling pig. Sunday past, we went to El Cortijuelo, one of two restaurants in the barrio of the same name, not far from La Nava. There you will find the Romero’s and the Martin Allyon’s, cousins who have restaurants.
Known locally as Fermin’s and manolo’s, they both serve great food. This week it was the turn of Fermin to provide us with the Cochinillo (suckling pig). For 22€ you are treated to a roasted leg of pig that comes served with roasted potatoes.
The whole thing takes between 1.5 to 2 hours, so, order in advance. Cooked in herbs, such as rosemary and garlic, this was absolutely delicious! Crisp skin and lean meat, served with a nice glass of white wine for me, and red wine for Steph.
What could you have to eat after that little beauty? Well, Fermin’s serves their own homemade deserts as well as a range of bought in puddings. We opted for an odd looking item that deserved a closer look.
“Wacky Cake” or “Mad cake”. You’ll find this is similar to a custard slice in the UK, with the difference being that it is encased in dark chocolate. It was very good, so good, we are going back next week for another try at it. (This version has a tot of Whiskey added to it, it would have been rude not to!)
Fried Fish Platter
Here we have another one of my favourite dished from Fermin’s. Often found on the Menu del Dia or “Menu of the Day” this plate of mixed fried fish contains Cod, Squid, Octopus, whitebait, Rosada (like Hake but pink tinted) prawns and more.
No two visits will see the same combination of fried fish but it is always delicious.
Pork in Pepper Sauce with Patatas a lo Pobre
A firm favourite of Memsahib’s. This is pork fillet, cooked on the griddle, covered in pepper sauce and served with Patatas a lo Pobre or “Potatoes of the poor”. The vegetables are more for decoration on this dish.
Chorizo con Lentejas or Spicey Sausage with Lentils
This is a video I made of a great dish we found at the Cortijuelo. Listed on the menu of the day, this spicy sausage with lentils is a fantastic dish, especially for the winter months.
Does it get busy at the Cortijuelo?
Directly translated it is a variety of Sausages but in this case, Fermin includes a local goats cheese and Jamon Serrano. This is a permanent feature on the menu del dia list. Served with bread and olives, this is a great starter.
Sopa de Picadillo
This soup is often served as a starter and is another favourite in the Andalucia area. Basically; chicken soup with bits of Serrano and boiled egg included, often with croutons. Great for the winter months.
Yes! A very simple answer. Weekends, especially Sunday and any bank holidays you will be lucky to find a seat, never mind a table. The food is good and the prices are very reasonable. The staff and service are second to none and the views from the terrace are lovely.
Just sitting having a tapas or something simple from the à la Carte menu is often enough to set you off for the day. If you are staying a La Nava, set aside at least one day to visit Fermin and his crew at El Cortijuelo.
The list of Spanish wines is endless. There many varieties of Red, White and Rosè, not to mention the Fino, Sherry, local sweet fortified wine and so on. At the Cortijuelo, there are two main favourites, Campo Viejo and Barbadillo.
The Barbadillo is my favourite, crisp, dry white wine that is great with anything. The Campo Viejo is a dark, ruby red and full bodied.
Like I said, I’ll be adding to this post of the 10 best Spanish dishes as I go along. Meanwhile, check out what else Fermin can serve you from his website menu.
These two restaurants are 3 minutes drive from La Nava.
Best Spanish Dishes – February 2018
Like I said, I will be adding to this Blog as and when I go out eating. Well, here are a couple more beautiful dishes for you to look at. Again, these come from the Menu del Dia (menu of the Day) at El Cortijuelo.
Guiso de Carne con Patatas y Fideos
This my friends is one hell of a starter! Meat Stew with Potatoes and Noodles. This comes right off the top of the menu of the day. A great dish for cold winter days, even here, in Andalucia, Spain.
Albondigas con Salsa de Almendras
Meatballs in Almond Sauce. From the same menu of the day, this second course is excellent for anyone with a big appetite. Tasty meatballs in a beautiful Almond sauce. It has a very mild curry flavour.
Parillada de Carne Variada
Barbecue of Varied Meats. This tasted better than it looked. Pork fillet, Chorizo Sausage, Pork Kebeb served with chips. Very filling.
Desert: Flan Casero Y Natillas Caseras
Home made Custard and home made Flan. Excellent way to finish your meal. These are two favourite deserts from Fermin’s restaurant, El Cortijuelo.
Menu del Dia – Menu of the Day
Three courses and a drink, 8€ Monday to Friday. You can do better than that now, can you? 10 best Spanish dishes is a hard list to come up with. What would your top 10 best Spanish dishes be?
More great Spanish dishes
Well, they say you can’t keep a good man down. We’ve been to our favourite eating place once more. Menu del Dia is such a great bargain, it far outweighs any visit to a fast food joint.
For example; We had the menu del Dia, a bottle of Barbadillo white wine and a bottle of the Campo Viejo. Total cost, wine and 3 course meal? 24€. Beat that!