Córdoba: the sultana
Cordovan cuisine masterfully
combines the excellent local produce with meats and fish, always fresh despite
the fact that Córdoba has no coast. It is brought daily, the best and freshest.
Centuries of Muslim rule left a
deep mark in Cordovan cuisine, as you will be able to see for yourself once you
get exposed to the traditional fare. Córdoba is an important producer of olive
oil of the best quality, used in salads, gazpachos, fried dishes and many other
oils with Designation of
Origin Baena and Priego de Córdoba, used to dress numerous dishes, have a deep
and fruity flavour, low acidity and a penetrating aroma. They are ideal for
frying. Cordovan cuisine is based on the great local produce.
The mountains provide lamb, pork, beef and game meats. The
Guadalquivir river valley and the farmlands provide cereals and pulses. The
local farms yield outstanding products like green beans, artichokes, etc. We
must not forget the wonderful oxtail hotpot and the lamb casserole, or the
traditional flamenquines (fried meat rolls) and honey lamb, a treat for meat
Local hams and sausages are also excellent, like Valle de los
Pedroches Iberian cured ham, the long pork sausage, the salami from Pozo Blanco
and the black pudding from Fuente Ovejuna and Hinojosa.
gazpacho (cold veggie soup) is a delicacy and the Cordovan kind – called salmorejo – is very
special, with other things added like ham, roast rabbit and fried eggs.
Cordovan cuisine is strongly influenced by the centuries of Muslim presence.
This shows in its taste for spices like oregano, mint, tarragon and in the use
of many foods that were introduced by the Arabs, like rice, spinach and bitter
Another inherited custom is the preference for sweet and sour foods and the use
of vegetables not as side dishes, but rather as main courses. Delicious dishes
are made with fried courgette, aubergine, alboronía (vegetable stew) and
artichokes. Other dishes from this rich heritage are the traditional perol
cordobés (meat and rice casserole) made with ground almonds, raisins and
apple chunks and the olla cortijera (chickpea stew).
Desserts and wines
The desserts are also delicious, specially the Cordovan pie, made with puff
pastry, pumpkin preserves and cured ham. The use of ham in this dessert is
somewhat recent and it has come to replace turkey, who in turn replaced hen, the
Cordovan pie is very common, but it not by any means the only dessert from this
region, where sweets abound. We recommend ring-shaped pastries from Priego,
quince jelly from Puente Genil and the meringues from Aguilar.
The Christians also left their legacy in the confectionery of Córdoba, with
delicious, rich desserts like perrunas (baked sweet made with flour, lard,
orange juice and lemon peel), honey-coated pastries and shortbread.As for wines,
in Córdoba you should have the ones with Designation of Origin Montilla-Moriles,
which are dry and aromatic.
The latest trend of this D.O. is the making of white table wines with low
alcoholic-content, semi-sweet and dry. Pedro Ximénez white wines are also