The Andalusian bread a delicacy to enjoy the good food
Andalusian bread is one of the basic elements of the traditional Mediterranean diet. A traditional product of Andalusian gastronomy present in the five foods we usually make throughout the day. A basic ingredient of breakfasts and snacks for many years. An accompaniment to main courses at lunch and dinner. It is also a star product in starters and tapas in bars, restaurants and refreshment stalls in Andalusia.
Bread is a good accompaniment to almost all foods. It is one of the ingredients in traditional Andalusian recipes such as gazpacho and ajo blanco (chilled garlic soup). Cateto bread or rustic bread, along with Antequera mollete, are two of the most popular types of Andalusian breads.
Wheat flour is the cereal most used for making bread in Andalusia. Other cereals such as barley or rye are also used to make bread. And there are more and more new ingredients that are added or removed to create a wide range of breads. Garlic bread, pumpkin or sunflower seed bread, nut bread, raisin bread, gluten-free bread and wholemeal bread.
Bread has been very important in the history of humanity. The basic food that is present in many social and religious rituals.
Learn more about the benefits of bread and let it be at your table every day
Bread consumption has been reviled in recent years. It was accused of making people fat, which is why many chose to eliminate it completely from their diet. However, increasing numbers of dieticians and nutritionists are reminding us that bread forms part of a healthy, balanced diet. The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends eating 250 grammes of bread a day. Moderation is key, as with any other food from the recommended Mediterranean diet.
What we lose when we stop consuming bread is water, not fat. We lose weight quickly and also lose the many health benefits of moderate bread consumption.
- Gives you energy for its rich content of carbohydrates. Bread belongs to the group of grains and tubers, since it is made with wheat flour, which is characterized for containing a large amount of carbohydrates, which serve as fuel for the body.
- It is a source of vitamins. Its consumption provides you: protein, iron, zinc, magnesium, potassium, niacin, vitamin B2, folic acid and vitamin B6.
- The fiber is a component present in bread. It is true that the breads made with wholemeal flours or whole-grain have greater content of fiber, but white bread has it, although in less quantity. The fiber helps you: to regulate the digestion avoiding constipation, and to control the levels of sugar and cholesterol from the blood to avoid heart diseases.
- Bread ‘is NOT fattening’. A slice of bread contains less than 2 grams of fat and less than 100 kcal, almost like an apple, or a pear or a banana. In addition, if we take as a basis a diet of 1800 kcal, a slice of bread would only be 5.5% of the total energy required for a day.
- It is very versatile. Sliced bread, much appreciated by children for its soft texture and rich flavor, and loved by adults for the comfort of its use and the possibility of having a great variety of flavors and presentations, that range from the classic white bread until the one containing several whole-grain cereals. It can be used on a daily basis as part of breakfast, lunch, meal, dessert or snack.
Types of Andalusian bread
Cateto bread and Antequera mollete are perhaps two of the most popular types of Andalusian bread. However, other types of bread have been made in Andalusia since time immemorial. Some varieties are from specific towns, as is the case with Alfacar bread. Other types of Andalusian breads owe their differences to the flour used, production methods and shapes of the end product.
Here are some varieties of Andalusian bread.
Alfacar Bread is a traditional wheat flour based bread, naturally fermented sourdough in the production area, water from the spring of Alfacar, baking yeast and edible salt. It is a universal recipe but the long baker tradition of Alfacar has given it some special touches. It is a local and traditional product.
Bakers make a characteristic bread thanks to the use of specific raw materials whose characteristics are linked both to natural as human factors in the production area.
The mollete is a piece of soft crumb bread with possible origin in the unleavened bread used in the past for the mass, and of Hebrew origin. It is the star along with the olive oil, of the typical Andalusian breakfast (mollete or slice of bread with olive oil, salt and in sometimes tomato and/or garlic). There are different types: breaded on the outside, old style, being the most famous the ones from Archidona in Malaga; from Puerto Serrano and Algodonales in Cadiz. Also typical are the ones from Espera (Cadiz) and Écija (in Seville), coated with the also typical ‘colorá butter‘ and the ‘Chicharrones Archidoneses’ or the seats or dregs of loin.
It is a white bread, of compact crumb, virtually without honeycombs, with a hard crust, with a very low level of hydration and prepared with a type of flour called ‘strong flour’. This type of Andalucia bread is used to prepare some good migas by its consistency.
Manolete of Cadiz
The Manolete is the typical loaf of bread in Cadiz, of semi-thick and tender crust, with a consistent and spongy crumb, white, that transmits a pleasant smell and juicy taste characteristic of the hard dough bread.
Oval-shaped bread, golden and crusty, with a tender, fluffy and white crumb, transmitting an odor that attracts and a pleasant and characteristic flavor.
It is the most suitable bread to make sandwiches. It is soft inside and out and its crust, thin and elastic. It has a reasonable size, about 25 cm.
It is a robust bread, with a compact crumb, and a thick and elastic crust. It is a large bread, of 28 cm in this case. The characteristic of this bread is the grid that is made on it.
This bread is reminiscent of white bread. It has a thin crisp crust, not crunchy, and a robust crumb. It is not commonly used for sandwiches, but for everything else as it is not very big, about 22 cm.
The bread in the cuisine
The bread is present in Andalusian cuisine from breakfast to dinner, and in many of the popular cuisine dishes.
- Toasts, of sliced bread or muffins, only with oil or a good loin butter, are associated with breakfast.
- Continuing with the toasted bread, in the All Saint’s Day party in Benacazón the toasts are crowned with grilled sardines, like in Castilleja del Campo, although here a good splash of olive oil is added to the bread.
- Bread, along with tomato and oil are the essential elements of gazpacho, salmorejos, porras, ardorias, sopeaos, sopillas, panochas… For these recipes, the bread with good crumb is the more appropriate, and if it is stale bread, the better.
- Bread is also essential for the strips of fried bread with garlic, sweet paprika and cumin, that give a special touch to asparagus, spinach and to rabbit, chicken or any meat stews.
- The soups of garlic and of tomato are better with a picatoste, as the picadillo soups with stew broth, chopped egg, ham and fried bread. Or ‘migas de matanza’ with its bread and whole garlic and rind.
A special, more settled, bread is used in Andalusia to prepare the torrijas (French toast). Nor we will understand porridge without hard bread for the croutons. Or poleás. From morning till evening, as starter, main dish or dessert, bread is always present in the Andalusian tables.
Panadería Piña, the most expensive bread in the world
One of the most fashionable bakers in Malaga is Juan Manuel Moreno, Manager of Panadería Piña and creator of the most expensive bread in the world. Its ingredients include 250 milligrams of edible gold, dried honey, corn, sunflower seeds and the cost of each piece is 117 euros.
Panadería Piña is a lifelong artisan bakery, where more than 30 varieties of breads are made daily starring the one of corn and spelt, one of the most sought by the public. The fundamental ingredients for a good bread are quality flour and long fermentation. Here the fermentation not is controlled and it takes up to 5 hours to make all the process.
Where to stay
Fuerte GrazalemaThe best option to stay is Fuerte Hoteles. The chain has facilities where you can enjoy, in addition to its services, the best of each point of the Andalusian coast. Its more than 50 years of experience are the best guarantee to dedicate your time only to relax and enjoy the Sun and the sea. Marbella, Torrox, El Rompido and Conil are some of the spots where you can find these amazing accommodations.