Traditional Christmas Flavours
Christmas Eve dinner. In Catalonia, Christmas Eve dinner is traditionally very simple and modest. A chicken or fish broth is the perfect preamble to the cold appetisers that come next. This is the moment to enjoy cured sausage from Osona, mountain cheeses and pâté from La Llacuna, anchovies and boiled seafood. Accompanied by large slices of toasted country bread, quince garlic mayonnaise and olives, no dinner is easier to prepare. Nor more appetising.
Christmas Day lunch. Baby Jesus has come into the world and it is time to celebrate! First course, escudella, a typical soup with pasta and meatballs. Then, a tray of stewed meat, vegetables and well-boiled chickpeas. In many homes, the celebration continues with a black cockerel from Penedès or a blue-legged capon from El Prat de Llobregat – stuffed Catalonian-style with sausage, bacon, prunes and pine nuts. For dessert, biscuit rolls and handmade nougat from the region of Maresme. All washed down with wine and cava from any of Catalonia's five denomination of origin regions: Penedès, Pla del Bages, Alella, Catalunya and Cava. Essential for enjoying the age-old specialities that await us on the Christmas Day table.
Saint Stephen's Day lunch. The main meal of this Catalonian celebration is based on a principle that is well known by cooks from all around the world: that the best dishes are made from leftovers. This is why the cannelloni served in almost every house on Saint Stephen's Day and made with any meat left over from the soup of the day before tastes so delicious. Many cooks also add truffles from Berguedà to the filling to make sure that the cannelloni is the star of a meal that is traditionally followed by a good baked fish.
Easter is another major event in the calendar of traditional celebrations. Would you like to find out which are the most typical dishes of this feast of the resurrection?