Feb 28 2024

Andalusia Day Celebrates the Region’s Delicious Culinary Offer, From Sherry Wine to Ibérico Ham

Andalusia is known for its gazpacho, extra virgin olive oil, bluefin tuna, and strawberries, and is home to many DOs, PGIs, and PDOs

February 28th is a very special day in Spain: Andalusia Day. The southern Spanish region is home to countless delicacies and unique products and dishes. Many of Spain’s high-quality olive oils are produced in its extensive olive groves, and it’s home to 13 Protected Designations of Origin and one Protected Geographical Indication for extra virgin oil. Also many of the Spanish table olive varieties come from Andalusia.

Bluefin tuna and mojama (which is, in fact, a dried and salted thin fillet made from tuna) come from Andalusia, which is home to two PGIs: Mojama de Isla Cristina and Mojama de Barbate. Southern Spain is also famous for its ham and charcuterie, and is home to Jabugo PDO and Los Pedroches PDO (Ibérico acorn-fed ham), as well as Jamón de Serón PGI, and Jamón de Trévelez PGI (cured ham from white pigs).

The region is also known for its world-famous fortified wines, produced mainly in Cádiz, under the Jerez-Xérès-Sherry y Manzanilla Sanlúcar de Barrameda DO and Montilla Moriles DO. There are also famous still wines, from DOs such as Condado de Huelva and Málaga-Sierras de Málaga.

Andalusia is also known for its fruits and vegetables. Close to 85% of European production of strawberries comes from farms in Huelva. Another popular fruit, quince, is also mainly grown in Córdoba, which is produced for making quince paste. It is also a land of tomato, with Tomate la Cañada PGI from Almería as a great example. Tomato is the main ingredient of two well-knows Spanish recipes that are firmly rooted in Andalusia. These are gazpacho tomato soup or its thicker version, salmorejo. Recipes made from fish as Pescaíto frito (fried battered fish) and espetos (grilled fish skewers) are also good examples of popular dishes from this region.

A land of great Chefs

Some of Spain’s greatest and most innovative chefs come from Andalusia, such as Ángel León, the innovative “chef of the sea,” whose restaurant Aponiente is in Cadiz, and Xanty Elías, of Finca Alfoliz, in Huelva.

Other chefs from the region are exporting their interpretation of Andalusia’s food all over the world. This includes Dani García, who once held 3 Michelin stars and has restaurants in the US, the UK, Dubai, and Qatar; and Paco Morales, who recently received 3 Michelin stars for its work in Noor restaurant (Córdoba) and recently opened a restaurant in Dubai.