The province of Málaga, located in the eastern part of Andalusia, is home to a very varied landscape, with a great mountainous display and a more than famous coastline. It is an enormously attractive and hospitable province with a fundamental ingredient, the open and welcoming character of its inhabitants. In it you can find a great atmosphere and also a very good gastronomy, of which you can learn a little more thanks to the information you will find here.
The Málaga gastronomy stands out for its flavors and its smell of the sea. Undoubtedly, when sharing the secret of the Málaga cookbook, it should be noted, first of all, that their food follows the line and style of Mediterranean food, accredited as healthy food, but it is also necessary to specify the use of high quality natural products and the love with which they are cooked. In addition, it should be noted that the Málaga gastronomy has “something” special, it has a combination of mountains and sea in its dishes and this makes it shine.
One of the most recommended ways to enjoy the Málaga gastronomy is through the large number of restaurants that you will find. All this without forgetting the accompanying wines, the famous Málaga wines.
Do not hesitate to try some of the typical dishes of Málaga gastronomy, because the best thing that can happen to you when you visit a place is "leave with a good taste in your mouth."
The dishes that you will find in this section are typical when ordering as tapas or to share. Depending on the establishment where you have the opportunity to taste these wonders of Málaga gastronomy and the specific characteristics of each dish, you can order them in one way or another.
The vast majority of these dishes are typical of the coastal area, since the main ingredient is from the sea.
Without a doubt, one of the most typical dishes within Málaga gastronomy, not only to share, but in general, is the sardine skewer. It consists of skewering the sardines, piercing their back on fine reeds to roast them with firewood, generally in a boat next to the beach bars, using the sand to nail them. In this way, the sardines on the coals are made with the fire, turning the skewers so that it is done well on both sides. To try the skewers of Málaga, you just have to take a seat at one of the beach bars that you will find on the different Málaga beaches.
Another typical dish to share and that you can enjoy in the beach bars is the Málaga fritter. It is a characteristic dish of the Málaga coastline that is made up of a wide variety of local fish, such as anchovies, chopitos, squid, fried red mullet or fried whiting, among others. In addition to the beach bars, you can order it almost anywhere.
Also within the fried fish, you can savor the fish in adobo, a fish fry, either grouper, pink cusk-eel, dogfish, albacore, tuna, anchovies without bone or others like that, which have previously been marinated with salt, paprika, crushed garlic, a little oregano, pepper and a drizzle of oil.
Combining the sea and the garden you can try the mussels with pipirrana. It is a salad, known in the area as pipirrana, consisting of tomatoes, peppers without heart or seeds, onion and cucumber, all chopped into small pieces, properly seasoned with salt, vinegar and olive oil, and mixed with the mussels previously cooked and devoid of their shells. A variant of this dish is the octopus cooked with pipirrana, which you can also taste in Málaga.
In the autumn and winter months, the Málaga clams are typical. You can find this seafood dish at any beach bar. In it, the cooked clams are accompanied by a delicious onion, garlic and parsley sauce, seasoned with flour, paprika, salt and pepper. They are served very hot, in the same pan in which they have been prepared.
To finish with these dishes, you can taste the roe salad. This typical Málaga salad is more typical of bars and sales than restaurants. Until recently it was one of the tapas that, without prior request, was served as an accompaniment to the drink. It is made with hake roe, tomatoes, peppers and onion, raw and finely chopped, and is seasoned with olive oil, vinegar and salt. The most appropriate time of year to consume it is spring-summer.
Some dishes of the Málaga gastronomy, due to the temperature at which they are served, have a certain seasonality, which means that they are usually eaten in the summer season or in the winter season.
Once you know the time of Málaga, it is not surprising that the typical gastronomy during the spring-summer season is one that is composed of cold and light dishes.
Among these dishes you can find the Antequera porra, one of the most typical of Málaga gastronomy. It is a paste or cream made with tomatoes, peppers, garlic cloves, olive oil, vinegar and salt. It is served with slices of hard-boiled egg, diced ham, tomato pieces and raw peppers. In the past, it was an essential sustenance for the peasant population, becoming a jewel of Antequera gastronomy. You can currently consume it in most of the hotel establishments in Málaga.
On the other hand, you can taste the ajoblanco, a delicious cold soup that is made with peeled almonds, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, salt and freshwater. To take it, you can add breadcrumbs, but its best complement is the muscat grape, from which the skin and seeds must be removed beforehand. In some places, melon balls are also added. It is served in bowls and consumed cold.
Apart from the ajoblanco, you can savor other cold soups typical of Málaga gastronomy, such as garlic gazpacho, zoque and old-fashioned gazpacho.
However, the cold dishes of Málaga are not only composed of soups, as there are others such as the avocado cocktail with prawns and capers, the pío antequerano and the pepper and tomato salad.
In the event that you prefer to visit the province of Málaga in the winter season, the list of culinary delights will not leave you with an empty stomach.
To begin with, the Málaga gastronomy offers you the viña AB soup, with fully Mediterranean characteristics. Málaga's peculiarity is credited by the letters A and B in its name, which belong to the brand of wine that gave it its name. It is a broth that is obtained by boiling the skeletons (bones) of hake and monkfish, mixed with leeks, onion and tomato, chopped, together with garlic, bay leaf and parsley. After sifting everything, the "Viña AB" wine that has given the soup its name is added. To this stew are added clams without shells and previously cooked, peeled and cooked prawns, and mayonnaise sauce.
You will also be able to taste the fish “en blanco”, a typical fisherman's soup where the fish that is usually used for its preparation is hake, whiting or horse mackerel. This mixture is mixed in a saucepan with water where chopped garlic, onion and parsley are also added, potato slices and seasoned with salt and pepper. Once cooked, olive oil is added and, if desired, a little lemon juice. Shortly before removing the casserole, place a few slices of seated bread and serve when it is fluffy.
Other typical Málaga soups are almond soup, puppy soups, wild asparagus soup, perotas soups, monkfish soup, tomato soups, maimones, gazpachuelo, asparagus and oyster soup and clams soup.
Some of these soups are part of the traditional Málaga cuisine, adding to some of the songs that the people of Málaga dedicated to their gastronomic delights, such as the following:
Cachorreña was lost,
gazpacho is looking for her.
Where did you come to 'find' it?
At home with white garlic,
relative of the 'ensalá'.
Apart from the hot soups to drink on cold days, in Málaga you will have the opportunity to try different stews and casseroles.
The Málaga cabbage is a stew that contains chickpeas, beef, usually blood sausage, chicken, fresh bone, aged bacon and pork leg or tail, mixed with cabbage that, depending on the time of year, can be green beans, carrots and pumpkin, and, if you like, beans and chard. Garnished with a mash of garlic, pepper, cumin and paprika.
Combining products from the countryside with the sea, you can try the noodle casserole with clams. In addition to the noodles, it contains artichokes, beans and clams, mixed with a sauce made in olive oil of tomatoes, garlic, parsley and onion, and seasoned with paprika, salt, saffron and a stem of mint.
Another dish is rice soup with cod, where the Málaga characteristic is that it is soup. The rice is accompanied by medallions of desalted cod, onion, pepper, tomato and garlic, which is seasoned with white wine, olive oil, saffron, cloves, pepper and salt.
If you visit Málaga during Lent, you shouldn't miss out on trying the chickpea stew, this tasty stew, in addition to chickpeas, contains chunky desalted cod, garlic cloves, leeks, chopped onion, chard and potato cut into chunks. And it is seasoned with the sauce resulting from a sauce of onion, tomato, flour, paprika, salt and pepper. But this is not the only stew that you can taste in Málaga, as there are others such as chestnut and bean stew, lentil stew and chickpea stew with pepper.
In addition to these dishes, the Málaga gastronomy will provide you with other typical stews and casseroles of the area, such as potato stew with clams, tripe, stew of peas and broad beans, stew of chickpeas or "pot", the rice at the part and the noodles a banda.
Once you have eaten a tapa, shared a dish with your family and friends and used the spoon for a hot or cold dish, it is time for you to stock up on a good fork and knife to sink your teeth into the delicious meat or fish dishes provided by the Málaga gastronomy.
With regard to meat dishes within the province of Málaga, they generally have a mountain origin, although nowadays they can be enjoyed almost anywhere in the province.
Cooked over low heat with the perfect mixture of soaked leg bread, bacon, garlic and salt, you will find the cortijeras crumbs. This dish was formerly served in the farmhouses to farmers when they returned from the field in the autumn-winter season. You can find it enriched with torreznos and by adding chorizo.
On the occasion of this dish, in Torrox town the so-called "Feast of migas and local wine" is celebrated on the Sunday before Christmas, with a large influx.
A typical dish of the Montes de Málaga is the bestial eggs, which is composed of cortijeras crumbs and, on these, some pieces of pork loin, a piece of blood sausage, another of chorizo and, as a culmination, one or two fried eggs. When eating this dish, you can accompany it with crushed and seasoned olives.
In addition to the delicacies on display, in Málaga you can taste other typical mountain dishes such as asparagus morrete, fried eggs with potatoes and chorizo, fried eggs with crumbs and porridge. The latter is closely related to Christmas Eve, which is demonstrated in two Christmas carols.
In the portal of Bethlehem
there is an old man making porridge
with the paddle in hand
inviting the girls.
A shepherd eating porridge
in the sky he saw
a sign that read:
The Redeemer is born.
Regarding the dishes where the main ingredient is meat, in Málaga the chicken sautéed in Málaga wine stands out, with its aromatic herbs from the countryside, such as thyme, oregano, peppermint and rosemary, and with the generous wine from the Montes de Málaga, capable of awakening anyone's appetite.
You can also enjoy a good Málaga style pork tenderloin, a delicious recipe that is part of the traditional Málaga cuisine, where the baked pork tenderloin with butter, carrot and onion is carved and served hot, covered with a sauce of butter, sautéed onion, flour, lemon juice, grated nutmeg, broth and salt, and chopped hard-boiled eggs, peas and a few cubes of ham are added.
But that's not all, the Málaga gastronomy will continue to delight you with other meat-based dishes such as chorizos from Arriate, rabbit a la cortijera, choto serrano, roast turkey with apples, chicken nuggets, partridges in marinade, partridges in salmorejo, shepherd's partridge, shredded veal and breaded veal brains.
Fish is a very characteristic ingredient of the province of Málaga, due to its situation in which a large part of the province faces the coastline. This is why a large part of Málaga gastronomy has ingredients based on the sea in many of its dishes.
You may have already seen that many of the previous dishes have fish among their ingredients, while many others can be modified and become more coastal dishes. This is the case of migas with sardines, which are prepared on the Málaga coastline. To eat them, you can accompany them with radishes, olives, melon, fried peppers and fried eggs.
However, there are many other dishes based on fish as the main ingredient that you can taste on your visit to Málaga. These dishes are some such as sardine moraga, a simple dish, typical of fishermen and made by people of the town, which is part of the traditional Málaga cuisine, with a clear Arab influence, hence it is also known as Moorish sardines. It is a kind of pisto composed of sardines, well cleaned, open, without bones or scales and by sliced tomatoes, together with green peppers cut into pieces. Garnished with plenty of parsley, garlic and finely chopped onion, a little ground pepper and saffron.
Another dish is the Málaga stuffed squid. It is a bag of a relatively large squid, which is browned with fried onion, white wine and bay leaf, and then cooked, filled with a mass formed by fried onion, peeled and crushed almonds, chopped serrano ham, the fried squid legs and a hard-boiled egg.
In addition, you will be able to taste other typical dishes of the Málaga gastronomy, such as fish meatballs, shredded tuna, yellow dogfish, salted bream with peppers, sole in sauce with muscatel grape, baked sea bass, medallions of monkfish in the coat rack style, fish gratin with olives, cod fritters, fish fritters, red mullet at my house style and sardine omelette.
Málaga cuisine has dishes for all audiences, so if you are vegetarian or vegan, you will not be left without trying a bite of the tradition and the typical gastronomy of the province. However, it is recommended that you try these dishes regardless of the diet you follow, as they are too exquisite for you to miss them.
The first dish of this category that the Málaga gastronomy offers you are potatoes in adobillo. This dish, which is part of the traditional cuisine of Málaga and is consumed especially in winter, has as its main base the sliced potatoes fried in olive oil, cooked and seasoned with a garlic mash, sweet paprika, oregano, pepper, salt, seated leg bread and wine vinegar.
Poor potatoes are obtained as a result of frying potatoes cut into elongated slices, with chopped peppers, tomatoes, onion and garlic, seasoned with a bay leaf, pepper, vinegar, oil and salt. It is a dish that is consumed throughout the year in many restaurants, replacing the traditional french fries and accompanied by fried eggs or as a garnish for many other dishes.
Continuing with the potato as a base, you can eat a plate of potatoes a la malagueña. Like the previous one, it is part of the traditional Málaga cuisine and is consumed especially in autumn-winter. It is a casserole of potatoes, previously sautéed with a bit of celery, parsley and some split olives, as well as finely chopped onion, garlic and tomatoes, and then cooked with salted water and a little pepper. Finally, it is served with bits of hard boiled egg drizzled on top of the plate.
Andalusian broad beans is another dish that is especially consumed in the autumn-winter season. It is a delicious stew that is formed by the simmered mixture of fresh beans, onion, garlic, bacon in pieces, white wine, pepper, a branch of mint and salt.
It can also be consumed fresh, but for this it is essential that the beans are harvested tender and are completely green. In this case, the pods are perfectly edible. Chopped together with the fruit and well fried, they constitute an appetizing delicacy that you can also find in certain catering establishments.
In addition, there are meat variants of this dish, such as broad beans with chorizo, or the most common, broad beans with ham.
The province of Málaga will offer you the opportunity to enjoy other typical stews such as the rondeña stew, spinach with raisins and almonds, and sautéed green beans.
You can also delight yourself with different stuffed vegetables such as stuffed aubergines, stuffed artichokes, aubergines with béchamel sauce, stuffed zucchini or stuffed onions.
Finally, to sweeten your palate, the Málaga gastronomy offers you different desserts and pastry recipes, many of them are part of the traditional culinary cookbook and some with great Arab influence.
A typical Antequera sweet is bienmesabe, although it is also consumed in the Canary Islands, as well as in Cuba and Venezuela, probably brought by Andalusian emigrants. It has been produced in a wonderful way since 1635 in the Bethlehem of the Clarisses Nuns Convent in Antequera, although you can also find it in conventional establishments in Málaga. It is made with almonds, sugar, eggs, angel hair and sponge cakes.
On the other hand, you will find drunkards with Málaga wine. Although drunkards is very widespread throughout Spain, the Málaga variant is its delicious wine. It is a donut fried in olive oil and covered in sugar, made up of a dough made up of flour, sesame, matalahúva, sugar, orange juice and Málaga wine.
A recipe that comes directly from the Málaga countryside is fig bread and it is an ideal way to take advantage of figs. It is a kind of cake of regular thickness, resulting from a pressed mass, formed by dried figs in very small pieces, peeled and chopped almonds, cinnamon, cloves and matalahúva.
The Arab influence can be appreciated in the pestiños, a typical sweet of Christmas times and, although they can be found in confectioneries, tradition has generally locked them in convents and monasteries. It is a sweet fried in olive oil, made up of a dough of flour, olive oil, white wine, anise, sugar and lemon juice, and then bathed in honey.
As if this were not enough to satisfy your sweet tooth, in the Málaga gastronomy there are other sweets and desserts such as orange sponge cake, oil buns, quince meat, sweet potato croquettes, chestnut flan, quinces in sweet, pine nut mustaches, oranges with Málaga wine, sweet potato powder, polvorones (shortbread cookie), wine donuts, avocado cake, coffee cake, oil cakes and Málaga wine torrijas (French toast).