Catalan cuisine is as varied as the land itself, which includes high mountains, seaside towns and rolling countryside. Each area has its own special dishes that combine local ingredients with typical Mediterranean flavours. Here are a few popular favourites to look out for and enjoy during your stay.
These seasonal shallots hit the menus hard in January and February. They are traditionally grilled on an open fire and served in bundles of newspaperto keep them warm. Calçots are accompanied by a romesco sauce made with tomato, red pepper, pine nuts and almonds.
Try them at: El Mussol, Avenida Diagonal, 488
This traditional Catalan stew can be prepared with different ingredients. It often includes large meatballs and seasonal vegetables. Another variation uses this broth and mixes it with rice or vegetables.
Try this at: Bardot, C/ Enric Granados 147
Fresh escalivada melts in the mouth, you have to taste it to believe it. It is made from smoke-grilled peppers, egg plant and onions, which are mixed with extra virgin olive oil and garlic, and left to marinade and soak up the flavours. It is sometimes topped with anchovies. Escalivada is served cold, and is often accompanied by crispy pa amb tomaquet. This rustic bread soaks up the oil and make a delicious snack. It is also served alongside butifarra sausages or other grilled meats, or as a topping for coca savoury pastries.
Try this at: Cal Boter, C/ de Tordera 62
Dessert custards or natillas are a popular way to finish a meal on a sweet note, and this is the king of them all. It is traditionally served in single portion ceramic dishes, with a crispy layer of caramellised sugar on top which you crack with your spoon. Delicious.
Try this at: Los Caracoles, C/ Escudellers 14