By Chef H. Delgado
November 9, 2020
For many centuries there was the conviction that the best date to carry out the sacrificing of the pig was around the festival of San Martín (November 11), due to the arrival of the coldest days and the first snowfalls, were the chosen days to perform the pig sacrifice.
This event in any cottage was significant, and a festive one, due to the consequences of procuring food reserves for the whole year. Also, it brought together, for various days, many people in the same house, among families, friends and neighbours, busy with the tasks that the butchery entailed.
Did you know when Muslims and Jews were deported, in 1492, those who stayed in Spain had to convert to Christianity and to give faith in this situation, they hung their pigs in the windows of their houses. The Holy Inquisition gave the value of a Christian rite to ”Dia de la Matanza”.
But today I want to show you about some of the typical Spanish pork products that perhaps you have never eaten. And of course introduce you to a couple of very typical dishes of this day of sacrifice, in which the grandmothers were in charge of cooking for the entire entourage, family and friends who helped in these busy days.
It is a typical blood sausage from the Spanish province of León, made only with pig's blood, flour and onion. However, some variants usually have other components as pumpkins, rice or nuts. Here you have the link of lovely Online Shop where you can discover more about this singular product.
Pork tripe is one of the most famous foods in Spanish gastronomy. Neither more nor less are part of the pig's guts, which are carefully cut and cleaned to make different recipes.
Botillo is one of the most peculiar pork product. The king of Bercian gastronomy since time immemorial and a traditional dish that has become essential at parties and celebrations, especially in cold weather.
The usual ingredients of the Botillo are pork rib and pork tail, tongue, cheek, shoulder and spine. Salt, paprika (Pimenton), garlic, oregano, and other natural spices are part of its seasoned.
All of this is the stuffing to fill the gut, the pig's stomach or even the bladder, previously marinated. Subsequently, it is smoked with oak firewood and allowed to semi-cure in optimal conditions of humidity, temperature and aeration.
The Picadillo is a classic among the classics of Spanish cuisine. It is pork loin minced and marinated with paprika, garlic and oregano. It is a typical recipe of the days of "La Matanza", where it was eaten fresh with the same dressing that you will make the sausages chorizo. It has served to know if the dressing was ready or needed more salt or adjust something else.
Now, you know a little more about how the families of the most rural Spain, used to cope with winter. Today in many places on the land, “La Matanza” is still celebrated but in a very different way. It is a famous barbecue in the main square of the villages, and all the neighbours can enjoy eating much food and cheering to welcome the cold winter.
I hope you have enjoyed the post. Here you have a couple of links where you can expand more information about Pork products, and some recipe on these and other beautiful products portions.
Have a tasty day!
Love for the product, take care of the technique, elegant execution, and above all, nature and environment respect, are my values as a professional.
It is a pleasure for me to invite you to discover the best dishes and ingredients of Spanish cuisine.
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