A Look into Catalan Cuisine


Tapas, Paella, Sangria… That’s what they eat in Barcelona, right? At least that’s what I thought. However, Barcelona is the capital city of the independent community of Catalonia and Catalan grub is quite different from the food of the rest of Spain. Follow this cheat sheet to eat & drink like a true Catalan for the weekend. Who says we all can’t live the Siesta life?


In Catalonia, the day starts with a light continental breakfast. Most Spaniards have coffee—either a cafe con leche (half coffee, half milk) or a cortado (a shot of espresso “cut” with a dash of milk).


Chickpea Stew with Spinach and Chorizo
Chickpea Stew with Spinach and Chorizo

This is the most important meal of the day in Barcelona! Lunch is usually a 3 or 4 course meal. It begins with a choice of soup, salad, or vegetables. Followed by meat, chicken, or fish, simply grilled or in a rich stew or casserole.

 Top Eats:

Meaty dishes such as veal and blood sausage are accompanied by hearty chickpeas, lentils, white beans, or white- and black-eyed beans.

Traditional fish paella of southerly neighbor Valencia is often transformed into a noodle-based dish containing rabbit, chicken, and rich regional sausage.


Pan con Tomate
Pan con Tomate

Tapas, Tapas, Tapas! Taste these few classics that you will see on most tapas menus in Barcelona.

Pan con Tomate: This is the quintessential Catalan tapa. White bread rubbed with tomato and drizzled in oil and salt.

Patatas Bravas: Known as the french fries of Spain. These small deep fried potatoes are served with two sauces – a garlic mayonnaise and a spicy tomato sauce.

Anchoas: These anchovies are not normally the very salty kind that you may be used to. They are served in vinegar with parsley and garlic. Delicious.

Croquetas: Croquetas are often made with ham, fish, chicken or spinach. They are made from a sort of béchamel sauce, breaded and deep fried.


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