Do you tend to stick to what you know and love on the menu when you eat out? Or do you choose something different each time? Holidays are the perfect opportunity to experiment with new tastes, and Spanish gastronomy is well worth being brave about. Now that the temperatures have dropped a little, we’re thinking of cooking up a storm, with the best of winter-warming Spanish stews. Recreate some of them yourself at home, and try a taste of Spain.

Fabada Asturiana

There’s really nothing better than a good, traditional stew, and you don’t have to go all the way to Asturias to enjoy a Fabada Asturiana. A staple winter dish on many menus, it’ll stick to your ribs and is perfect with a robust red wine. White beans, Chorizo sausage, Morcilla – like black pudding – and pork belly are all cooked long and slowly to create this hearty winter dish. Perfect after a long walk, or a day on the ski slopes of the Sierra Nevada in Andalusia.

Recipe for Fabada Asturiana

Rabo de Toro

Essentially, stewed bull’s tail. If the idea doesn’t appeal to you, then just try it, because you’ll be pleasantly surprised. If you have a slow cooker it’s an ideal way to cook this traditional dish, simmered with bay leaves, red wine, garlic, and tomato. It’s melt in the mouth delicious, with the meat beautifully tender, and the sauce rich and sticky. It also requires a robust Spanish wine to counteract the richness of the dish.

Recipe for Rabo de Toro.

Olla Podrida

Nourishing chickpeas – that staple of any Spanish granny’s larder – pork, flavour and long slow cooking conjure up Olla Podrida. Hailing from Burgos, the dish is an ancient one, and the name comes from the vessel used to cook it. It would have originally been cooked over the embers of an open fire and is high in calories and energy. These days, you’d be more likely to cook it in the slow cooker. A delicious dish to set you up for a long day exploring the Spanish countryside, or perhaps even a day searching for that perfect Spanish property.

Recipe for Olla Podrida.

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