Huelva's cuisine has a vast wealth of culinary delights thanks mainly to its geographical location. The ocean gifts the city with fresh and highly nutritious seafood, whereas the Sierra delivers its famous Iberian pork and game meats.
The great kings of the table in Huelva are without doubt the ham, produced in the Huelva Sierra, the shellfish, within whcih we can most certainly highlight the white shrimp, and fruits like strawberries, which we are also known as 'red gold' in the area!
However, many other products can be dished up on our plates such is their quality. White wines, whose production is exclusively undertaken in Andalusia, the extra virgin olive oil, fresh fish and many garden products due to the generous climate...can cause our tastebuds to come back for more!
Fresh from the coast, fish dominate the menus with croaker, sea bass, sea bream, sole, plaice (grilled or fried), grilled sardines, mackerels, adobos, paprika and many more fried fish specialties such as the delicious mullets all readily available.
As for shellfish, we have the famous white prawns from Huelva, a delicacy that is eaten cooked or grilled. This famous specie of prawn takes its place alongside shrimps, clams and razor clams which can all be consumed steamed, grilled, and with garlic. And not to mention our signature dish made with 'choco'...squid with beans is a signature dish from Huelva....displaying the perfect harmony between sea and countryside! You can also find squid served grilled, fried and in the form of meatballs!
In Isla Cristina and Ayamonte many companies produce tuna roe ('Mojama de Atun') and mackerel ('Caballa'), so if you want a little something from Huelva to take home with you to impress your friends and family back home, be sure to grab a tin before heading home!
As for meat, due to Huelva capital being so close to the Sierra de Huelva and the 'Andévalo de Huelva', and because of the hunting tradition in the city, you will find a most accomplished variety of game meats. The king is the Iberian pig, which has as many names in the area as it does flavours.
In Huelva there is a saying, "del cerdo hasta los andares", which roughly means that they take advantage of every part of the pig, and with good reason! Not to be missed are the sirloin steaks, sausages in gravy and all the delicacies derived from their slaughter such as the black pudding, dried sausage and pepperoni. Why not be brave and delight your senses by sampling the testicles, (try them!) the or even the ears. Also the Iberian pork pates and 'sobrasadas' are of exquisite quality!
As products of the pastures... cattle, sheep and goats are slaughtered at a young age, so the meat from the area is extremely tender. Beef is making a comeback in the city and you will find it in much of the grilled cuisine, or cooked in stews and oxtail soups. The lamb and goat are also consumed in stews or roasts, but the product par excellence are most definitely the sheep and goat cheeses, which you can even sometimes find slightly spicy.
Game meat has long been a traditional ingredient for cooking in Huelva. The rabbit stew and pickled partridges are mainstay dishes in the area, while more often than not you will find wild boar and deer appearing on restaurant menus.
All this is complemented by fresh local vegetables, grown here due to Huelvas favourable climate. Local wheat will also be found on every table in the form of the delicious local Huleva bread.
With regard to vegetable dishes there is the local tomato soup, 'gazpacho', various salads, 'pimentadas' or 'picadillos' containing tomato, onion, pepper and cucumber, which is often served as garnish.
The countryside in and around Andevelo offers a wide variety of mushrooms harvested and consumed. The star is the 'gurumelo' (Amanita ponderosa), but many mushrooms fill local recipes from the province such as 'chanterelles' and 'gallipiernos'.
Finally, legumes occupy an important place in any Mediterranean diet . The chickpea is the base of the pot whereas you will also find plenty of lentils with chorizo ??or beans with pig's trotters!
Many dishes are topped off with local extra virgin olive oil, sea salt from the Biomaris saltfarm in Isla Cristina and local vinegars aged in barrels reveal the taste and smell of this land. You will also want to accompany our fine dining with a good drink. Here you can opt for our white wines, rich and varied from the fruity (young wine) ideal with seafood, full-bodied fine wines, fragrant or sweet wines, vermouth or orange wine, especially suitable for desserts!
Also Huelva offers sparkling wine in the form of Cava. Today also red wines have begun to increase in importance across the menus in Huelva. In addition, the distillation of alcohol has an important basis for the development of 'anise', or 'anise liquor' as well as dry fruit liqueurs including flavours such as blackberry, raspberry and acorn from the Sierra Andévalo...not to mention the world famous brandies, such as that produced in the 'Luis Felipe' made by the 'Bodegas Rubio' Winery in 'La Palma del Condado'.
And all good meals in the city are topped off with fruit and pastries made in Huelva! The strawberry is the base for any dessert during the summer months, but restaurants are increasingly introducing more forest fruits, such as raspberries, blueberries or blackberries. In the Sierra, the chestnut can be eaten raw or candied, caramelized, roasted or cooked.
In the bakery, Hispanic-Muslim tradition has left its mark. The 'Andévalo Pestiños' with honey or 'torrijas' which are mostly consumed at Easter. Desserts made with sweet cider such as the 'Coca de Ayamonte', almonds such as the 'Hornazo San Bartolomé de la Torre', almond and honey as the 'Cortegana Piñonate'. Add to this artisan confectionery, such as the 'Anise Moguer' with traditional cakes, pastries, such as those produced by 'Victoria' and 'Rufino de Aracena' confectionists who specialise in desserts made with egg yolks.
Treat your palate and come and taste the cuisine in Huelva...you won't be left hungry!
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