Essentials of Asturian Cuisine

The nature, the coastline, the towns and villages… Asturias has so much to offer that’s just waiting to be enjoyed. But above all, while eating. We say this because besides seeing some of the most beautiful scenery in Northern Spain, in the region you can eat well and eat plenty! With this in mind, we’ve put together this list of some of the most authentic Asturian dishes so you know exactly what to order when you’re in Spain’s very own Natural Paradise. Qué aproveche! Enjoy your meal!

“Fabada”

This rich bean stew is the most traditional dish in Asturian cuisine. The original recipe calls for large white beans (fabes) which are stewed together with chorizo, black pudding (morcilla) and bacon (tocino). Fabada is served extremely hot and for that reason is most commonly eaten during winter, but can be eaten throughout the year. We also recommend having it for lunch as its heavy nature won’t do any favours for your digestive system late on in the evening!

“El Cachopo”

Although typical of Asturias, recently “cachopo” has become a popular dish throughout Spain. It consists of two or more very large fillets of beef, sandwiched together with ham and cheese and then covered in breadcrumbs. It’s usually served with mushrooms, apples… this recipe has plenty of variations! You’ll love it!

Cider

The ideal drink to go with anything Asturias related! It has a natural, apple flavour and is best served ice-cold. But, don’t be alarmed when you see how the waiters are pouring it. The technique is known as “escanciar” and involves pouring the cider at a height, with the bottle kept well above your head with your arm as the liquid falls down into a glass held in your other hand. Even though quite a lot of the drink is wasted, we guarantee you that it’s the best way of drinking it. But, don’t try this at home!

“Pastel de Cabracho”

The perfect light snack to enjoy before a large, northern Spanish feast! “Pastel de Cabracho” is a type of fish purée, ideal for snacking on or spreading on bread while enjoying a glass of Asturian cider. The dish has a subtle and pleasant flavour, even for those who aren’t huge fans of fish.

“Chorizo a la sidra”

Another excellent light snack which can be ordered at any bar or restaurant in Asturias. Very traditional, easy to find and of course extremely tasty! “Chorizo a la sidra” with bread will definitely be one of your favourite Asturian dishes. Guaranteed!

Asturian cheeses

Did you know that Asturias has the largest variety of cheeses of any region in Europe? And, you can tell! Some names to look out for are: “El Peral”, “El Gamonéu”, “El Vidiago”, “Los Oscos”, “La Peña” and “El Valdesano”. And, of course, “El Cabrales”, which was the first Asturian cheese to achieve a “Denominación de Origén” (“a Designation of Origin”), a government classification of excellence. All are worth a try, however, for their exceptional quality!

“Tortos de maíz”

“Tortos” are simply small, flour tortillas with meat, cured ham, eggs, cheese or sardines on top. They can be eaten at breakfast with a soft cheese or honey or at any point during the day with whatever you fancy. You’re sure to love all of its many variations!

“Los Carbayones”

Let’s finish off with one of the most popular desserts in all of Asturias, which is largely unknown throughout the rest of Spain. A delicious pudding with almonds and egg yolks, and made with puff pastry and covered in sugar. It’s the perfect dessert to follow a great Asturian meal!

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