Saturday, March 20, 2010

95 ~ The Spanish Bocadillo

bocadillo de tortilla 2 Crusty Omelette Bocadillo
bocadillo de tortilla 1 Bocadillo de Tortilla

Anyone who has come to Spain has probably tried a bocadillo at one time or another.

A crusty fresh baguette split lengthwise, usually filled with ham or cheese, and without butter, mayonnaise or lettuce. If you've tried one in an airport you've probably found it a little dry, making it necessary to order as well a bottle of water or café con leche to help wash it down.

On the other hand you may have found a popular little cafe or bar that is known for serving good bocadillos, toasted on the grill or not, where you can be assured of a fresh crispy panecillo (bread roll) filled with soft jamón serrano (serrano ham), York ham or slices of golden cheese. Still without butter or mayonnaise unless you are somewhere that will add them to order. But toasted on the grill, and moistened with olive oil, the simple bocadillo is raised to another level.

I bought the one above one day while I was up in the town of La Orotava, while watching and taking photos of the annual making of the flower carpets of Corpus Christi. It was filled with a generous slice of Spanish omelette, the well-known potato and onion Tortilla Española and resulted in a meal in the hand, again needing a bottle of water to accompany it but ever so good.

Another favourite filling for bocadillos is soft spread fresh chorizo:

fresh chorizo
...a pork mixture seasoned with dried smoked red peppers and spread over bread, reminiscent of Mallorcan sobrassada, which we consumed in quantity while living in the Balearic Islands.

Here is a young lady with a basket of mini bocadillos which she is generously passing around during the celebrations of the Romeria de San Isidro Labrador, in La Orotava.

Romeria bread girl
And the contents of her basket: hard cooked eggs and bocadillos spread with chorizo.

mini bocadillos
And extra large bocadillos of chorizo are often used as part of the harvest decorations on the ox carts during this romeria celebration:

romeria attaching bread
And down in the town, bocadillos with added fillings can be seen stacked in bakery windows, in this case with lettuce and tomato along with the jamón serrano and cheese:

bocadillos in Cafe Columbus
Excuse me if I've made you hungry!

I'm off now to make myself a toasted ham and cheese butter, but with a good drizzle of olive oil!

So thanks for your visit and until next time...¡Hasta la vista!



debsgarden said...

Oh, my! It's almost midnight as I read this, and I was already hungry but determined to do without a bedtime snack. I don't need the calories, but your post didn't help!

Ashleigh said...

You have totally made me hungry, but my will is strong. I have never seen that chorizo spread...what a great idea. I think I would love it! I do love the tortilla espanola on the baguette, especially with brava sauce. Can you please give more info on why the people are stringing up the huge baguette with the plants???

Canarybird said...

Ashleigh that photo was part of a yearly June celebration which includes a very long parade of carts drawn by oxen, in which food items and fruits of the earth are displayed.

It's part of the Romeria celebration of San Isidro Labrador, patron saint of farmers in the town of La Orotava. The locals dress in their native Canary costumes. I have a blog post dedicated to that event at:

Daricia said...

oh my you've brought back so many memories! as a college student in tenerife with a group of americans, we had a hard time adjusting to the meal schedule. cafe con leche was pretty much it until a large meal around 2. pitying us, our hosts finally began giving us bocadillos around 10 every morning so we could last until lunch! :) delicious. do you know if "bocadillo" is used anywhere beyond the canaries? latin america doesn't seem to know the word. i really love your blog. your photos are fantastic.

Canarybird said...

Thank you for your visit and comment. I can imagine how difficult it was for an American to adjust to the Spanish mealtimes. I had the same problem when I first arrived in Spain.
The word bocadillo is known all over Spain. I knew it in Mallorca and had many of those dry cheese stale bocadillos while waiting in Madrid airport for a flight connection (smile). "boca" means mouth in Spanish, and "bocado" is a snack or tidbit to eat, and "bocadillo" is a little snack, used to refer to a baguette sandwich.

Gill Bailey said...

Yes this made me hungry too Mom, and I am trying to stop bread altogether for weight loss as well as try that South Beach diet idea, yum now I will have to eat something minus the bread..................
Love Gilly


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