Get to know the 6 essential Canarian foods

Through gastronomy you can always get to know a land. Therefore, it is not surprising that the Canary Islands have a cuisine full of contrasts, with well-seasoned dishes and fresh and healthy ingredients, the result of a temperate climate and a volcanic soil that gives them a special flavor. In addition, many of its handmade products are under Protected Designation of Origin, such as some of its cheeses and wines. In this article we will talk about the essential Canary Island foods in any diet.

In the Canarian cuisine, some characteristic ingredients have a great presence, such as millet, the name by which corn is known in the Canary Islands; potatoes, which due to the volcanic origin of the land have a different texture, as well as native varieties that only exist in the islands; and a great variety of fish typical of the area, such as the vieja, the grouper or the wreckfish. Of course, we cannot forget the banana, the king of Canary Island foods and one of the most complete and tasty fruits that exist.

The 6 essential Canarian foods in the islands

The banana of the Canary Islands, the most representative fruit

Ripe Canarian banana bunches

The banana tree is totally integrated in the agricultural landscape of the islands, in addition to the necessary elements for its cultivation, such as the windbreaks of blocks, the ponds and puddles in the middle of the crops, the packing halls, etc. The plantain arrives to the islands coinciding with the beginning of the colonization of the Archipelago, being previously introduced here, to later send it to the American colonies. The plantain is one of the most incredible and complete Canarian foods.

Canarian cheeses, internationally recognized

Cheeses from the Canary Islands

Its traditionally elaborated cheeses, such as Majorero, Palmero or Flor de Guía, have, in addition to the PDO, a wide recognition worldwide.

Goat cheese is a compact paste, with an increasingly yellowish rind as it ages. Some are spread with oil and gofio. It has a strong and slightly spicy flavor.

Flor cheese is a product that follows a peculiar system to curdle the milk, using the thistle flower, known by the locals as pelusa. It is a type of vegetable rennet. This cheese is usually related to the municipalities of Santa María de Guía, Gáldar and Moya, since they are the largest producers of this variety. The producers usually have a herd of sheep, some cows, and even several goats.

Malvasia, among the autochthonous grapes of the Archipelago

If there is something that elevates the Canary gastronomy, it is its products with Denomination of Origin. In almost all the islands you will find delicious wines with their own denomination of origin, with which you will be able to feel the strength of the volcanoes in every sip. Canary Island wine, and more specifically Malvasia wine, had the whole of England at its feet. So much so that Shakespeare, who must have enjoyed it, praised it in more than one of his works.

It is believed that the Canary Island malvasia comes from Madeira, where it was planted by order of Henry the Navigator, who ordered the variety to be brought from the island of Crete. Thus, it reached the Portuguese island around 1427 and the Canary Islands almost a century later.

Papas arrugadas, a dish that can't be missed

This dish is one of those that we consider typical of the Canarian gastronomy, but it is not a culinary invention, but it is the result of the nutritional reality of the Canary Islanders. It is the reflection of the shortages and the result of the ingenuity of those who in their kitchen had to manage to feed the family when there was almost nothing in the pantry, that is why it is one of the most important Canarian foods.

There is no custom in the islands to follow a specific recipe book and this is also reflected in the case of wrinkled potatoes. In general terms, there are some coordinates that everyone follows for their preparation, but then, each cook has his or her own trick to wrinkle the potato, as there are also different ways of eating them.

Gofio, among the most complete Canary Island foods

Among the essential Canarian foods we have the Gofio Canario, generic name of all vegetable substance, cereals, which, reduced to powder by grinding, which is the action of grinding in an artisanal way in millstones, and after being roasted cereals, its final destination is human food at all ages. It can be consumed in different ways: with milk, coffee, broths, honeys, sugar, and in typical dishes of Canarian gastronomy such as sancocho, pellas de gofio or escaldón.

Canarian mojos, a thousand and one ways to make them

Mojo is the typical Canarian sauce with which many of the dishes that make up the cuisine of the islands are seasoned. The mojo is a preparation that is elaborated with some basic components: oil, garlic, salt and another series of ingredients that are the ones that give the flavor and the peculiar color of the sauce.

Its origin is not clear, although there is a Portuguese word from which its name may come from: molho. It is true that mojo also has some peculiar characteristics that could be related to some Mexican, Argentinean or Venezuelan preparations. From the gastronomic point of view, its usefulness is to reinforce and enhance the flavor of some of the dishes or foods from the Canary Islands.

If you are interested in the world of the products elaborated in the Canary Islands and its gastronomy and you want to know more, we leave you below the link to our section of Gastronomy section.


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