is as diverse as its history – the influences of the many civilizations and cultures that once held their sway in Cordoba can be seen (er… tasted) in its cuisine. The Moors were the first to develop the olive oil trade, and this had an immense impact on Cordoban food, where it is one of the main ingredients. The use of almonds, oranges, dates and figs also point to the Moorish influence.
Cordoba food is full of color and richness in taste. Cordoban chefs may include shiny red peppers, bright orange pumpkin and purple grapes in their recipes, with saffron, cumin and other exotic spices adding the flavor. In addition, although Cordoba is a not a coastal city, fish still gets star billing. The Cordobans adjust easily and make do with what is available in the market.
There are many dishes and drinks in Cordoba that prove to be strong temptations to the palate. Cordoban food is typically Mediterranean and tasty. These are just some of the specialties in Cordoba:
- Paella (a dish made with rice mixed with vegetables and meat, sometimes seafood is also added)
- Gazpacho (an Andalusian staple, a cold soup made of tomatoes, vinegar and garlic)
- Salmorejo (a thicker version of the gazpacho)
- Salchichon de Pozo Blanco (sausage)
- Morcilla (blood sausage)
- Rabo de Toro (oxtail stew).
- Calamares fritos (fried squid, breaded and deep fried into crispy perfection)
Another must-try is the tapas, which are savory tidbits, small portions of the above dishes and other kinds of food (cheese, ham, seafood). They is best consumed while standing at a bar with a drink. Tapas, since they are small servings, are a highly economical way to taste the dishes Cordoba has to offer.
Don’t forget to try the jamon (ham) produced by the Alpujarran village (in Trevelez) and the Pedroches valley, both villages in the Cordoba province.
For dessert, try:
- Tocino de cielo (an egg yoke-based sweet)
- Pestiños (fried sweet lathered with honey)
- Alfajores (a honey and almond delicacy)
Wash these all down with refreshing drinks such as the fino (sweet wine) from Montilla or Moriles. If you want to try this wine, just order “vino blanco”, white wine is “vino blanco afrutado”, red wine is “vino tinto”, and beer is “cerveza."
In Cordoba and the rest of Spain, food is not just a way to fill the stomach – it is a passion, a way of life. Keep this in mind when exploring the many dining choices you have in Cordoba. You won't walk away disappointed!