What to eat on cold days? Spanish traditional cooking

Learn Spanish language is important, but also get to know some cultural and gastronomic areas to live a real Spanish immersion.
In Spain not every day is sunny and warm and not everyday Spaniards eat ‘paella’, we also have typical recipes for the cold season. Our gastronomy, with its assortment and variety, has always been ready for autumn and winter. In fact there are plenty of options. The warm stew dishes represent to a large extent the cozy spirit we received from our parents and grandparents, even though it could be considered by some people as old-fashioned cookery.
Although stews are recommended within a balanced diet because of their wide range of ingredients, it is advisable not to exceed with them, considering that they sate a lot. Anyway, we are going to present in this post the most popular stews that will allow you to taste the flavor of the authentic Spanish gastronomy.
We can distinguish lots of different varieties of ‘cocido’, depending on the Spanish area, among others the ‘madrileño’, the ‘montañés’ or the ‘maragato’. The most common ingredients of ‘cocido’ are chickpeas, ‘chorizo’ –watch out! Always the specific one to cook, that’s different from the cold meat-, chicken, meat fat, carrot or cabbage and it is usually served with a soup.
It is one of the most typical dishes of the Asturian region, but it is also well-known everywhere else in Spain. The main ingredient is the Asturian bean, also known as ‘fabes’. It is usually served with ‘chorizo’, pork shoulder or black pudding.
Stewed potatoes
Finally a dish that won’t fill you up like the ones we mentioned before, but still achieves the goal of warming up. It is served with some kind of meet that is suitable to be stewed, like veal or lamb, a meat clear soup and a ‘sauté’ with red and green peppers, onions and tomatoes.
‘Lentejas castellanas’
‘Lentejas’, or lentils are a global consumed legume cooked in so many ways, but in our case we eat it stewed and accompanied by meet like pork ribs, chorizo, onions, peppers, tomato, garlic, and a bay leaf which is sauté.
In every single one of these dishes the ingredients are affordable and easy to find. The recipes are not very complex, although you must be patient with the cooking time, as the stews have to be always cooked slowly.
If you do not consider yourself able to cook them in your kitchen, Madrid has some restaurants where they take these recipes to the next level of taste. You don’t need to go very far, in fact you will find some pillars of this traditional cookery very close to our Spanish school, such as La Bola, open since 1870 and specialized in ‘cocido madrileño’, Casa Hortensia, whose ‘fabada’ was awarded in 2015 as the best of Madrid or El Puchero, which stands out because of its ‘lentejas’ but you can also choose to taste one of their great variety of soups.
Have you already tried to cook or just taste one of these dishes? Tell us your experience in the comments section below. And remember continuing with your Spanish immersion.
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