Galician Cuisine is one of the most delicious foods of Spain competing for the First Prize with the Basque Cuisine. Both areas are in northern Spain where the abundance of fish and seafood is mind boggling.
The Autonomous Community of Galicia Spain, is located on the northwestern part of Spain and its many big towns of Santiago de Compostela, A Coruña, Vigo and Lugo offer the best of the Galician dishes. We have been several times to Galicia in the past and can attest to that.
Their language is very similar to Portuguese due to its proximity, so you may note that in the names of the dishes.
The world renowned Empanada Gallega
Traditional Fishing Economy on its long shoreline
As mentioned above fish and seafood is the basis of Galician Cuisine, but we may also include all kind of meats and poultry and of course, a great variety of vegetables and fruits.
In other words it is a full carnival of colors and tastes.
Galicia has been a less developed community within Spain; therefore they utilize every sing catch or agricultural product that gets to their hands.
Due to the large community of Galician Expatriates (Gallegos) in my native Cuba, I am familiar with their dishes since my early childhood. Here are a few of the most famous.
Polbo ao Feria or Octopus Feira Style one of the Galician Dishes
This is a very popular dish in Galicia it is prepared a feirs, well pounded to make it tender. Cooked whole and then dut in pieces and seasoned with olive oil, paprika and salt. This dish is very famous in the hole country and called “Pulpo Gallego”.
This is a meat pie with an array of different fillings like meat, fish, and vegetables. The ingredients are chopped thoroughly and mixed with lots of onions and spices. Finally baked and served hot. By the way if made with Tuna Fish it is called “Empanada de Atun”
This number one famous dish of the Galician Cuisine is the front leg of the pig cooked with the leaves of turnips, boiled together and served with sausage and potatoes.
Vieira or sea scallops are abundant on the shores of Galicia. It is cooked with onions parsley and breadcrumbs. It is served in its own shell and covered with the cooked mixture.
Delicious Caldo Gallego or Galician Broth
Made of cabbage, potatoes and beans adding sausage and pork, this broth is so heavy that could be considered a main course. It was so popular in Cuba, that today it is included in all Cuban Restaurants menus.
Those are tiny peppers about 3 cm long considered a delicacy by locals and visitors. It makes a great dish for tapas, fried in olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt.
These are varieties of shrimps, being the langostinos the largest of them. Cooked and served with olive oil.
Gambas al Ajillo one of the top dishes of Galician Cuisine
This delicious dish of prawns in a garlic sauce is claimed by Galician, Catalonians and Castilians, so let’s make it a delicious Spanish Dish.
In Spanish, almejas are served in a Tomato and garlic sauce.
In Spanish “Mejillones” are served in a sauce of Tomato and Olive Oil.
Called in Spanish “Mejillones” is grilled with cheese and parsley crust.
Merluza a la Gallega can be found all over Spain
Hake is “Merluza” in Spanish. This is one of the most renowned fish of Spain, exported to the rest of the world. It is served in any way you want, grilled, cooked, fried, breaded and more.
Called in Spanish “Rodaballo” this fish is one of the most delicious catches in Galicia. It is fried or breaded and served with seafood
This Spanish Grown Pepper is a must in many récipes of Galician Cuisine.
Delicious Tarta de Santiago with the cross of St James, Patron Saint of Spain
Galician Cuisine Desserts
To make this article shorter, let us dedicate the desserts to the number one of Galicia.
Translated to English is St James, Tart, named for the patron saint of Spain. The origins of this tart are unknown but I can assure you it is delicious.
It is an almond cake or pie made with ground almonds, eggs and sugar. This cake is usually decorated with powdered sugar, masked by the imprint of the “Cross of St James” which gives this cake its name.
For more information go to Galicia Tourism Website
Wine and Liqueur in Galician Cuisine
Wines vary prom province to province in Spain. The best known wine in Galicia is the Albariño, a fruity white wine usually served with fish and seafood. Another one is the Galician Ribeiro wine, well known throughout Spain.
As for liqueurs the locally produced “Orujo” is a strong one used to make the popular drink “Queimada”.
In a brief article I tried to summarize the Galician Cuisine, so delicious and simple.
credits for images
polbo a feila by takewar
empanada gallega by tamorlan
caldo gallego by juan maguto
gambas al ajillo by javier lastras
merluza a la gallega by javier lastras
tarta de santiago by javier lastras
all coutesy of wikimedia commons