What Spanish ingredients should I get?
- Lina Jun 20, 2011 03:25 PM
I don't have a lot of experience cooking Spanish food, but after a few days in Spain I'm dedicated to learning. I'm still here, so was wondering if anyone could give me suggestions of what food items or ingredients I should buy that can travel well.
I love the boquerones en vinagre here, but the packaging seems to say that I need to refrigerate it. Is that really true? I'd love to pack a few packages of this but it would have to be able to survive without refrigeration for a few days.
How about cured meats? Can I take those with me sans refrigeration?
Any other suggestions would be appreciated. I have a few more days here and would love to pick up a few things.
Strangely, I brought back all kinds of stuff, but my family liked the different tea flavours (there was a hibiscus, raspberry rooibos) best. Chips, people give you the fish eye, but they'll let you bring it in. Sadly, can't bring back cured meats and I love their pork products. But you could probably do olive oil and Spain is known for olives too.
Paprika,sweet, bittersweet and smoked. I like the bittersweet.
Sherry vinegar or other wine vinegar.
High end canned seafood
Bottled Piquillo Peppers
Salted Marcona Almonds
Pedro Ximenez Vinegar Grand Reserve
Marques De Valdueza olive oil or Nunez del Prado EVOO in the Tin can $$$
Ybarra Olives with Piquillo Peppers
Various El Rey Smoked Paprikas
Boquerones White Anchovies
Bajamar Asparagus Spears in can
Bevia Sea Salt
and LOTS of paella rice
Catalonian Vichy water
From another of several threads on the subject:
I would not even know where to begin, but for starters:
Saffron (red threads); marcona and other almonds; Pimenton in 3 varieties (hot, agridulce and sweet); Ortiz ventresca tuna and the myriad other tinned seafoods aabilable in any supermarket; Tolosa beans; Bomba rice; terra cotta cazuelas; membrillo; Torta del Casar and other cheeses; Iberian ham; Tortas de Aceite crackers; tinned Navarra piquillo peppers; tinned Navarra asparagus; Espinaler sauce for the tinned cockles and other shellfish; local honeys and jams.
Here is a partial list I posted for someone else here not long ago; these are just some of the things that I often bring home from Spain; they are not particularly linked to Madrid but are easy to find in that city.
" My list is more or less the same as yours. I will also look for tinned piquillo peppers from Navarra. Last time I bought cans of asparagus from the same region. In addition to the Cuca brand of seafood, mentioned above, I think, look also for Cabo de Pena brand which has satisfied me in the past. I want to bring home chipirones and almejas, as well as tuna. And also the white anchovies, which I fell in love with only recently at a Spanish wine event..
And mojama, vaguely similar to bottarga..but usually made from tuna..
A new revelation to me are the dried beans from Spain. I bought a bag of Tolosa beans from Kalyustan that were so good and creamy, even after a couple of years of languishing in my cupboard! I never have luck with dried beans but these were so good that I plan to bring them home, and also look for other types of beans..
White beans from the Segovia area, too--Judiones de La Granja.
I am sure you know these, but Marcona almonds; saffron; and olives will be on my list..... "
Here is the original thread, with lots of shopping info contained within:
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By erica on Apr 28, 2011 06:37PM
I would bring the boquerones; I have seen them for sale unrefrigerated, in markets.
I would buy many tins of pimenton, in all 3 varieties. Plenty of tinned ventresca or other top quality tuna.
If you buy tinned asparagus, make sure they are from Spain (Navarra, I believe) and not from Peru.
Tortas de aceite, if you can keep baked goods in the hot steamy climate.
You can get boquerones canned or in a bottle, but they are packed in olive oil and different from the ones in vinegar that are so ubiquitous in bars. You have to hunt for them a bit--look in the canned fish aisle at El Corte Inglés or--if you can--at one of their "Club de Gourmet" stores.
I know it probably seems like carrying Coals to Newcastle, but bring back rice from Spain. It is different and if you are going to make Paella and other Spanish rice dishes you will need this short grain rice. BTW, Claudia Roden's new book, The Food of Spain is a must have. I checked it out of my public library and now have to have it. It is a very comprehensive book and covers Spain by regions. I will be able to eliminate a number of cookbooks in my arsenal with this 1 book.
While a medium grain rice that absorbs a lot of broth is ideal for paella, Spanish speakers have adapted to using other types of rice. For example in Latin America, long grain is widely preferred, even in a paella style dish. Here's a Filipino version that also uses a long grain.
There have also been adaptations in the seasoning. For example annatto is commonly used to color rice instead of saffron.
I would skip the Roden book in favor of Anya Von Bremzen's New Spanish Table, which is out in paperback. http://www.amazon.com/New-Spanish-Tab...
And of course, Penelope Casas' books are classics. But you would do much better ordering these from Amazon rather than trying to find them in English in Spain and paying the price there.