The Canarian Gastronomy
The island`s gastronomy is one aspect of our culture, normally less known by the tourist. However, its of great interest and it can give many enjoyable surprises for whom decide to go without, during their holidays their daily diet or the offer of the international cookery restaurants.
Canarian cookery is of an enormous simplicity, but also of a great wisdom and rich in flavours full of authenticity. The climate, the different micro climates and the utilization of the nearest and usual products, mark the traditional recipe book of the gastronomy in the Archipelago.
The fish from here is of an exquisite palate and in nothing has it to envy the famous products of the cantabrian, in a repeated opinion of the critic Xavier Domingo. The fish is normally prepared simply baked or boiled as it says in the “earth”, dressed with oil, vinegar, and hot pepper (chili), or accompanied with mojo (sauce).
El mojo is a sauce prepared in different versions that is always in the well served tables of the island. It can be green, of coriander, or red, called also Hot Mojo. The fish for excellence and most appreciated by the canarians themselves is “la vieja”, of a very white and delicate meat, but also are recommended, between others, el bocanegro, la sama or la salema.
The tunidos are in abundance in the wáter of the Archipelago, they are very delicious and they are served fried, grilled or in pickle: the mackerel, sardine and, specially, el chicharro that gives the name to the capital of the island and, stretching, to all of Tenerife. The Tinerfeños are Known also as Chicharreros. There is a marine animal that you must to taste: The moray, fried and crunchy, the bite preferred by the roman emperors, inexplicably, forgotten by the big contemporary gourmet.
In the most humid and cold zones of the isle, it results more pleasant to taste a casserole of fish – Cherne o mero, in general – accompanied by a escaldón of gofio: Milled corn flour and toasted, mixed with the broth stew.
In the meat chapter we would highlight the denominated Meat party plate that is pickled pork cubes. It is called this because it is prepared typically in the popular celebrations, and it is served in bars during the patronal celebrations and “verbenas”.
The cabrito, in its different forms, and the Rabbit in Salmorejo that, as the majority of the fishes are accompanied with canarian wrinkled potatoes, interesting form of cooking the potates with a lot of salt without being peeled that makes it maintain inside all of its flavor of one of the island varieties of quality hardly comparable with any of other latitude. There are of many size, texture and colors, although the most popular are the denominated beautiful and, above all, the blacks, tiny, very dark outside, yellow on the inside, buttery and tasty.
The canary pastries are very tasty and various maybe because, here, it is the last chapter most appreciated of a good meal. The “huevos moles”, “el bienmesabe” and the roast milk there are some of the main dishes of this facet of the traditional gastronomy in Tenerife. Many of these pastries can be supplemented with a stream of palm honey, originally from La Gomera, a sweet product that it is obtained, from the cooking of sugar – cane juicy or sap from the highest and inaccessible part of the palm.
The cheeses, tender, from goats, are presented, commonly as starters of the main food. The canary cheeses return to recover their prestige and, in the last international exhibitions of dairy products, have achieved important awards. The cheese of Tenerife, in the past and until the middle of this century in which existed many beef cattle, could take different proportions of cow milk with that of goat and sheep.
At the moment, predominates the goat cheese that can be fine on its own or with the addition of sheeps milk which gives it with its fat more creaminess; in some cases it also has cow milk. Although it can be cured and in some occasions smoked, it is usually consumed fresh, as it has a pleasant palate and is not strong, which gives it a a different personality in comparison with other European goat cheeses.
Mojo, word probably from a portuguese origin, is the canary name for the typical sauces. Not all the sauces are called mojos, only to those sauces which really originate and are characteristic of the island, so that, for example, there doesnt exist a mojo of mayonnaise, but yes a mojo of coriander.
The best known are the mojo of coriander, that many people call Green, although in property this corresponds to the parsley, the red, with abundant paprika and the mojo picón which has a base of pepper, but the list is wider and include elaborations with saffron, cheese and almonds, amongst other possibilities.
The canary gofio is made of different cereal grains that, once toasted and grounded, that give rise to a wholemeal flour of a thin texture. In Tenerife, the most consumed is the gofio of wheat, although also is fabricated of corn, and rarely that of gofio of chickpeas, consuming also the gofio of wheat/corn.
El Gofio was the most basic food in the diet of the guanches in Prehispanic times, who used stone mills to do it. At the moment it is used as a complement to different dishes and inclusive it is being used in new creations of pastries and ice cream with agreat success.
It was an indispensable resource in periods of food shortage, and it was carried to América by canary immigrant. In 1990 was founded the “Association of gofio producers in Canarias” that have achieved for this food, nowadays positively valued, the specific denomination of “Canary Gofio”.