Andalusian cuisine is rather varied, corresponding to a region that is itself extensive and varied. Notwithstanding that, the cuisine of Andalusia is characterised by Gazpacho, fried fish (often called Pescaíto frito in the local vernacular), the jamones of Jabugo, Valle de los Pedroches and Trevélez, and the wines of Jerez, particularly sherry.
Frying in Andalusian cuisine is dominated by the use of olive oil that is produced in the provinces of Jaén, Córdoba, Seville, and Granada. The foods are dredged in flour a la andaluza (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.
Fish and shellfish
With five coastal provinces, the consumption of fish and shellfish is rather high: white shrimp from the Bay of Cádiz; 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; smelts; etc.
Andalusian cuisine includes also some unusual seafood, like ortiguillas, sea anemones in batter.
Andalusian desserts are heavily influenced by medieval Andalusian cuisine. Notable dishes include Pestiños (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, and torrijas.
Wines and liquors
The wines of Jerez (also known as sherry) are famous the world over, praised even by William Shakespeare. Other standouts are the manzanilla of Sanlúcar de Barrameda, the white wines of Cádiz, paxarete (a sherry derivative), wines of Condado in Huelva, wines of Montilla-Moriles in Córdoba, wines of Málaga, and la tintilla of Rota. The liquors of the region are also popular, included the anís made in Rute, and in Cazalla de la Sierra, and the rums from the Tropical Coast of Granada (Motril).
Typical Andalusian Dishes
Typical Andalusian dishes include pescaito frito (fried fish), gazpacho, Cordoban salmorejo, pringá, oxtail, jamón ibérico (Iberian ham), prepared olives, alboronía, poleá, anise, and various kinds of wine, including sherries (fino, manzanilla, oloroso, Pedro Ximénez, amontillado) which are undoubtedly the most exported and most widely available of all Spanish wines, as well as Málaga 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 Andalusian dishes include:
- Salmorejo (Córdoba)
- Flamenquín (Córdoba)
- Ajoblanco – Everyone has heard about the traditional red gazpacho soup, and many have tasted it. However, this recipe for cold white garlic soup or sopa de ajoblanco is just as tasty and refreshing. In fact, garlic lovers would probably vote for this soup hands down. It is easy, quick and healthy.
- Gazpacho Andaluz – A cold tomato soup from Andalusia, Spain. Centuries ago, gazpacho was made with nothing more than bread, garlic, salt, olive oil, vinegar, and water.
- Pipirrana (Jaén)
- Habas con calzones
- Huevos a la flamenca
- Alcauciles rellenos (Cádiz)
- Migas de Harina
- Tortillas de camarón (Cádiz)
- Gazpachuelo (Málaga)
- Biénmesabe o adobo
- Ajo harina (Jaén)
- Soldaditos de Pavía
- Patatas a lo pobre
- Pescado Frito (Andalusian Fried Fish) – Served hot, freshly fried, and can be eaten as an appetiser (for example with a beer or wine), or as a starter or main course.
- Tortilla de patatas