12 Dishes from the French Way

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The Camino de Santiago is not only a journey of adventure and achievement, or cultural and historical journey, it is also a sensory journey full of stimulus, such as the smells and flavours, distinctive and personal as the places you are going through during the route.

Many people takes the Camino de Santiago as a gastronomic journey. It is a way to enjoy and experience the authentic dishes of the provinces and villages linked to the Camino. For many people is the perfect vacation; active because you are walking in addition to enjoying rich typical dishes and tasting great wines.

The gastronomic and wine tourism has been very successful for several years and the Camino de Santiago has become a great option for this type of tourism. The Camino It is not only a matter of burning calories, you also have gained a few… haha. No wonder our application have been awarded in FITUR as the best app of cultural and gastronomic tourism.

Here I leave a selection of 12 dishes of the French Way. Remember that in our  VOJO WAY application you can easily find a multitude of restaurants and bars offering these delicious dishes.

1. ALCACHOFAS CON ALMEJAS  (Artichokes with clams)

@losviajesdetito - Instagram

@losviajesdetito – Instagram

(Tudela – Navarra)
The Navarran town of Tudela is famous for growing  artichokes, popularly known as “flor de la huerta” (plot’s flower) because of its shape. The dish par excellence of Tudela signature dish is The artichokes with clams. This dish was invented for the Lent Fridays to avoid eating meat. Sauteed with a little garlic this dish is a  delight anyone who try it .

2. PATATAS A LA RIOJANA (Riojan potatoes)

@iisforiraide - Instagram

@iisforiraide – Instagram

(La Rioja)
Although  the dish origin is in the province of La  Rioja, the  processing of the dish extends to the nearby regions. It is a casserole made ​​with potatoes, chorizo, onion, garlic, paprika and some bay leaves. Experts say that the trick for making perfect Riojan potatoes is to mash the potato a little bit for the starch to loosen and bind the sauce.

3. BOTILLO

@tierradesabor - Instagram

@tierradesabor – Instagram

(El Bierzo)
This sausage is made from pork cutting and the introduction of meat after marinated and spiced. Then it is smoked with oak wood base and it is allowed to dry for a few days.

4. SOPA DE AJO (Garlic Soup)

G M - Flickr

G M – Flickr

(Castilla y León)
This is a soup of humble origin and therefore there are many variants. Depending on the economy of each household one ingredient or another is added. However the original version contains water, bread (from 2 days ago), paprika, bay leaf  garlic, olive oil and a poached egg to round it. It is a dish closely associated with Easter.

5. COCIDO MARAGATO (Maragato’ stew)

@djphet - Instagram

@djphet – Instagram

(Castilla y León)
The Maragato stew is named after the region of Maragatería. It is a high-calorie dish, which formerly was considered an ideal dish for field workers, as usual they had only one meal. The casserole is made with thin and short noodles, chickpeas, cabbage and seven types of meat are used: the beef, ham, pork, beef jerky, lamb, goat, bacon and chorizo, plus a tasty filling of breadcrumbs, garlic, parsley and eggs. As a curiosity, the stew is served the other way around; First the meat, after the vegetables and then finally the soup.

6. CALDO GALLEGO (Galician style stew)

@manualvarezto - Instagram

@manualvarezto – Instagram

(Galicia)
A classic of the Galician cuisine, especially during the winter months. The main ingredients of this emblematic dish are the greens of the turnip, collards, cabbage, potatoes, beans, and chorizo, all linked with daub, which gives it a unique flavour and consistency. As is a homemade dish the recipes can vary depending on the vegetables of the season.

7. LACÓN CON GRELOS (Pork with turnip tops)

juantiagues - Flickr

juantiagues – Flickr

(Galicia)
One of the best known Galician dishes and even Spanish cuisine. Originally  this dish was a typical dish to be eaten during carnivals, as it coincided with the pig slaughter and is the time when the grelo (turnip tops) quality is higher. The term “Lacon” is a term used only in Galicia.

8. EMPANADA BERCIANA

@eternamentechef - Instagram

@eternamentechef – Instagram

(El Bierzo)
In the fifteenth century it was the usual food for  parties, weddings and picnics. Thin crust pastry, that can be filled with meat, sardines, collard greens, but an ingredient that differentiates it from other pies is the use of the chopped potatoes. Also it is known as ” the Battalion pie” .

9. PULPO A FEIRA (Octopus with potatoes and paprika)

@tabernaelarco - Instagram

@tabernaelarco – Instagram

(Galicia)
Probably the most representative dish of the Galician cuisine. However experts argued that the dish origins is not 100 % Galician. Before it was typical to eat this dish during the cattle fairs, which were held throughout Galicia. Interestingly the best octopus is prepared inland, this is because the fishermen dehydrated the octopus in the sun to allow its transport inland. The dish presentation is as typical as the dish itself; wooden plate, bed of potatoes , octopus, olive oil and paprika.

10. CORDERO A LA PASTORA (Shepherd´s Lamb)

@farrandemora - Instagram

@farrandemora – Instagram

(Aragón)
It is a dish rural dish of shepherd origin. The lamb is roasted in an earthenware tray and requires careful looking after as the dish need milk to be added gradually at certain times to achieve greater juiciness. Seasoned with garlic, sea salt, herb, pepper, thyme and oil makes this a scrumptious dish.

11. AJOARRIERO DE BACALAO (Cod in a vegetable sauce)

@restaurant_forat19 - Instagram

@restaurant_forat19 – Instagram

(Estella)
Its origin can be found with the activity that the “arrieros” carried out (arrieros were the people dedicated to transport with mules). Because they were travelling they could use ingredients from different regions. The dish main ingredients are: salt cod, garlic, pepper , tomatoes and potatoes, but sometimes we can find pimientos choriceros (dry red ​​peppers), ñoras (sweet red peppers)  and chilli.

12. OLLA PODRIDA (Rotten Stew)

@fireproof_j - Instagram

@fireproof_j – Instagram

(Castilla y León)
It is a dish from the Medieval  Age. The dish real name was “Olla Poderida” (The power stew) referring to the power. It was a dish that only the wealthy people could afford. It is a  mixture of vegetables, pulses and meat . With time and the language evolution the dish name has change to a not very suggestive one, but the dish is delicious.

UN EXTRA: VIEIRA GRATINADA (Scallops gratin)

@eatmeandrinkme - Instagram

@eatmeandrinkme – Instagram

(Galicia)
I could not finish the selection of dishes without the famous and ubiquitous scallop. For many pilgrims to eat one scallop upon the arrival in Santiago has become almost as obligatory as embracing the Holy statue. There are many ways to cook this dish, but all need to have a filling and the gratin. Scallops are one of the most representative ingredients of the Galician cuisine.

I hope you liked the selection. Along “El Camino” we can find many other dishes, so feel free to suggest other dishes and comments. I would like to make this list a bit longer.

Bon appetit !

Translation: Jessica Gispert.

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About Author

Isaac Martínez

Soy diseñador multimedia, hiker experimentado y arquitecto de Rutas en Vojo. Un día descubrí el Camino de Santiago y ya no me lo pude sacar de la cabeza. Me gustaría compartir con todos vosotros la experiencia y conocimientos que he podido adquirir a lo largo de cientos de kilómetros recorridios por esta y otras rutas, y dar a conocer consejos, historias y curiosidades que te ayuden a disfrutar mucho más tu Camino.

8 Comments

  1. Alberto De los Santos on

    Me ha encantado este articulo, vaya eso por delante… (aun estoy salivando…)
    De los platos expuestos en el articulo probé en su día la “Olla podrida” en la misma plaza del Rey D. Fernando de Burgos, frente a la Catedral y a principios del mes de Septiembre, aun con los calores del verano… había que verme sudar, pero no dejé mas que los huesesitos de la manita de cerdo. El “Cocido Maragato” en el centro de Astorga.
    En el Ezequiel de Melide su famoso “Pulpo a Feira” (regado con Ribeiro) Y en la Rúa Do Francos, ya en el mismo Santiago, el “Lacón con Grelos”. Cualquiera de estos platos fueron un autentico goce para los sentidos.
    De los otros platos típicos que probé en mis diferentes Caminos, y de los que guardo un sabrosísimo recuerdo (y sus correspondientes fotografías) son:
    La “Borraja” en Los Arcos (Navarra) plato que nunca había probado.
    “Alubias a la Riojana con todos sus Sacramentos” en el Restaurante de la Hospedería del Monasterio de Suso (La Rioja)
    El “Lechazo” en el mismo León.
    Y el “Caldo Gallego” de la Venta Celta en O’Cebreiro (Lugo)
    Otro recuerdo imborrable (aunque no pueda incluirse entre platos tipicos de cocina elaborada) fue un bocadillo (el Especial de la Casa) de la Venta El Acebo (León) a mitad de aquella cansina bajada hasta Ponferrada.
    Sin otro particular y felicitándote por tu acertada elección de tema y platos (lo que me deja pendiente y por degustar 8 platos típicos aun de tu relación) me despido con un fuerte abrazo y un BUEN CAMINO compañero.
    Alberto De los Santos

    • Isaac Martínez
      Isaac Martínez on

      Hola Alberto,

      En primer lugar muchas gracias por tu completo comentario. Me ha encantado conocer tu experiencia gastronómica a lo largo de toda la ruta. Casi se te puede calificar como un experto en la materia, así que me alegro de que después del post tengas ocho nuevos platos en tu lista de pendientes. Con tu comentario queda patente que un buen plato de comida también es capaz de crear grandes recuerdos, jeje.

      Me apunto los que no conocía para la próxima entrega sobre platos típicos.

      ¡Un saludo y buen Camino!

  2. Dices en tu presentación que desde que desde que descubriste el camino de santiago no te lo puedes quirar de la cabeza. Pues ya coincidimos en algo. Yo en 2008 descrubi por casualidad el km 0 en Santiago y hasta hoy no he parado de hacer caminos, el Francés, el Norte, el catalan y proximamente el primitivo y siempre que inicio uno nuevo todavia me sorprendo mas. Quizas algun dia haga ub bloc como este tuyo del que leyendo posts he avivado recuerdos. Felicidades por esos articulos y buen camino y como un hospitalero me dijo una mañana antes de pertir… “suerte en la vida”

    • Isaac Martínez
      Isaac Martínez on

      Hola Rafa,

      Pues sí, de alguna forma u otra el Camino siempre está presente en mi día a día, además tengo la gran suerte de trabajar en un proyecto relacionado con él. Me llena de ilusión tener comentarios así y te agradezco mucho el tuyo. Te animo a que empieces ese blog y que lo llenes de Camino.

      ¡Mucha suerte y buen Camino!

  3. Buenos días!

    Interesantísimo artículo. El potencial gastronómico del camino de Santiago es uno de sus atractivos menos conocidos y es una buena forma de complementar el viaje que supone el camino. Por eso decidí escribir una guía gastronómica del camino francés, para conocer aquellos productos km0 que se pueden encontrar y evitar así el timo del menú del peregrino. Os dejo la info del libro, por cualquier duda, contactad conmigo.

    Un abrazo!

    http://www.ecosediciones.com/producto/comer-bien-en-el-camino-de-santiago/9788415563778

    • Isaac Martínez
      Isaac Martínez on

      Hola Cinta,

      Muchas gracias por tu comentario. La verdad que la gastronomía alrededor del Camino de Santiago es todo un mundo en el que hay mucho por descubrir y trabajos como el tuyo ayudan a eso.

      ¡Un saludo!

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