Within the Asturian cuisine, Gijón occupies a leading role, either for its signature cuisine or for its particular maritime seal in the preparation of the most traditional dishes of the Principality. Undoubtedly, the gastronomy of Gijón finds its first source of inspiration, and its raw materials, in the Cantabrian sea that bathes its coasts, being fish and seafood their culinary stars.
When sitting at the table your restaurantsWith a good tablecloth and a professional service for decades, we continue to see in the letters that the fruit of fishing and shellfish is the most repeated: fried of pixin, hake or cod, fish and seafood soups, octopus with skates: a stew in which the pulpín de pedréu (small rock octopus) reaches a splendid taste over low heat; squid afogaos ("drowned" because they are cooked with the lid on); and those two exquisite species such as tiñosu (cabracho) and golondru (cuckoo or perlón), in pot; or the unquestionable specialty of the ventrisca de bonito, a summer dish that has its origin in the marine neighborhood of Cimadevilla; typical of the summer are also the squid of potera (caught with hook); and we do not forget the monkfish with bugre (lobster), fried or grilled mullets and a long list of recipes with a dominant seafood, almost always enriched with clams and andaricas (nécoras), and without more dressings than the basic ones: garlic, onion , olive oil, perjil, paprika, white wine and little else. Also abounds the seafood that is eaten without more preparations than a good cooking: prawns, crayfish, barnacles, razor clams, spider crabs, ñoclas (sea oxen), the popular llampares (limpets) and the oricios (sea urchins), one of the greatest gastronomic pleasures that the sea offers and that in Gijón they have been tasting since the beginning of time.
Everything makes our mouth water and from the cetáreas and fishmongers jumps to the counters, bars and tables of a branch, that of the restoration, that in Gijón have an almost capital relevance. Poach, stew, blanch, confit. A tasty vocabulary that comes from the kitchen and that in this city finds its own dialect, enriching the record of a kitchen like the Asturian, which practically speaks well everyone who knows it. But in addition to the sea, in the Gijón hotel industry the products of the land and the air are also styled, concreting in classic pots, menestras, rice or beans, recipes with roxa meat, as well as Asturian desserts and a pastry in which the Charlota shines with its own light, a cake prepared with a base and base of biscuits, with chocolate, candied cherries and a long inventory of ingredients; or the Tarta Gijonesa, a dessert with a generic name that, among other things, mixes almonds and nougat. Without forgetting famous Asturian desserts such as rice pudding, apple cakes, frixuelos, casadielles, hazelnut cakes ...
Asturian recipe books
If you want to know Asturian cuisine or where to eat well, we recommend you buy the book "Recipes to love Asturias" and "Les fartures", two interesting and very well documented books.
In recent decades, the cuisine of Gijón has been enriched by a way of enjoying food in a popular way, a formula that has always been one of the essence of Asturian culture. The espichas join party or celebration, good eating with spikes, hors d'oeuvres in abundance and lots of cider, which in these occasions is usually a barrel or pipe and not bottle. Fritters, sausages, tortillas, sausages and salted meats, boiled eggs, a long etcetera arranged in the long tables of a llagar (the equivalent, it could be said, to a wine cellar), where barrels and large spaces abound. In any case we would not be entirely objective if we identified the llagares and "simple" food, there are many types of menus in many of them today, and some even hold wedding banquets. In the vicinity of the Labor University, also near the Botanical Garden, more specifically between the areas known as the Magdalena and the Maizales, there are numerous picnic centers, several cider factories and sores. In the parishes of Cabueñes, Cefontes or Castiello, where the landscape becomes fully rural, with praos, bushes (natural hedges) and quintanas, surrounded by fruit trees, these Gijon sores find their greatest density.
The forms of gastronomy of Gijón, in addition to the espichas and the aforementioned of Chigres, cider houses and restaurants to use, also contemplate the avant-garde kitchen, for seasoned gourmets looking for new signature textures and flavors. A proposal that here is developed in an almost vertiginous way, with numerous restaurants of this type already recognized with Michelin stars or with the regional brand of Mesas de Asturias. We are talking about new dishes, with new names and no less novel aftertaste: cooked egg cocktail, chorizo brick with cider gel, glass of crab ... a culinary reinterpretation, a distinctive touch to please the most demanding palates who come to Gijón because They know that it is worth sitting around the table in the capital of the Costa Verde.
Text: © Ramón Molleda for asturias.com