Doing the Camino de Santiago doesn’t only mean walking and doing physical activity. Along your Way and at the end of your stages, you can enjoy the delicious Galician food! Let’s find in this post, our 5 top recommendations for the Galician cuisine. Have a try and taste the best of the local gastronomy, you will love it! Before starting your Camino you could find some useful tips about the food on the Way in this post.
Galician cuisine: 5 recommendations
Galicia is one of the most popular regions in Spain because of its gastronomy. There is a wide range of specialties and at the moment there are 15 restaurants awarded with a Michelin star. Yayo Daporta, As Garzas, A Culler de Pau, are just some examples of how important Galician cuisine is, also at an international level. At Galiwonders, we want to recommend you some typical dishes for you to try during your stay in this lovely region. If you have already walked the Camino and remember some typical plates, please let us know in the comment section below.
Empanada gallega (Galician Pie)
The main ingredients of this dough that can be filled with many different stuffings, are eggs and flour. We may find them filled with cod, tuna, octopus, sardines, meat, seafoods… it’s usually eaten as an appetizer or a starter, and in some places you may taste it as a free tapa with your drink. If you manage to try it, we strongly recommend you the “empanada de maiz” (made with corn flour) because the type of pastry is quite different than the normal one, a bit more crunchy. A real delight for the palate!
Pulpo A Feira (Octopus)
The most daring ones, will be delighted to try one of the most acclaimed dishes of the region, Pulpo a Feira, or octopus. It looks quite easy to cook but finding the correct point is the most difficult part and the job of the “pulpeiro” (the person in charge of preparing the octopus) is considered a real art and needs years of practice. After boiling the octopus, they add some olive oil, salt and paprika. It is served on a wooden plate, and eaten with a toothpick. If you do the French Way you can try it in Melide, a famous village for the preparation of this delicacy. Many pilgrims affirm that this is the plate they liked the most along the Way and that they would like to taste it again.
Goose barnacles, spider crabs, scallops, clams, mussels, lobsters, langoustines, prawns… Galicia can be true heaven for those who love seafood, as varieties seem to be endless! The quality of our shellfish is appreciated all over the world, but also the great value for the money. Don’t leave Galicia without enjoying a delicious seafood platter! If you walk the Portuguese Coastal Way, you will be able to find many restaurants serving this delicious food, incredibly fresh. Some of these places celebrate famous festivals like the Lobster’s Festival in A Guarda or the Oyster Festival in Arcade. It can be quite an experience to go to the market of the cities you will cross and see how strong its importance in this region is. One of the most famous market you can visit, is the Santiago one, at Mercado de Abastos. You will enjoy the atmosphere and will be able to taste some fresh food and local wine while relaxing in this market full of life!
Peppers of Padrón (little green peppers)
The green peppers of Padrón, (a small village along the Portuguese Way) are very famous not only in Galicia but in all Spain. There is a saying in Galician language “pimientos de Padrón unos pican y otros non” which means, “the peppers of Padrón, some are spicy some are not”. You can always get a “hot” surprise and get one or more small spicy peppers, but they are so delicious that the risk is worth the reward. Most of them are sweet and very tasty, prepared in a very simple way, quickly fried and sprinkled with rock salt. Enjoy!
Galician meat (Beef and pork)
For those who are truly hungry, the churrasco is a meat feast: ribs of pork and beef, chorizo… all cooked on the grill, served with chips, salad and “chimichurri sauce“. You will probably see a lot of commensals enjoying a good plate of churrasco, a chuleta or chuletón, (t-bone steak) on the beach bars, during summer season! As you can see, both meat and fish lovers can find many options to satisfy their appetite. After a long day of walk, get some rest and enjoy the best of Galician cuisine!
Obviously there are many other delicious plates that you can try along your Way such as the caldo gallego (special soup of this region), the cocido (boiled pork meat with potatoes and chickpeas), the different cheeses of this region (tetilla cheese, Arzúa cheese), the tortilla of potatoes, the Santiago cake, the filloas (like thin crepes), the flan, ect. Check out for the dish of the day and try to taste many different specialities along your Way.
To accompany your meals, we can’t forget the wines of the Denominations of Origin and the many liquors (herbs, coffee, ect.). We hope you found this brief list of interest, and if you have something to add about your own experience on the Way, please leave a comment below. Feel free to contact us to receive an itinerary for your Camino de Santiago and Buen Camino!