Traditional Spanish Style Calçots


It’s February, which means Calçotada season here in northern Spain! Eating these delicacies is a messy affair, so best enjoyed outside in the open air – perfect for Covid times!


What is a calçot?

The glorious calçot, one of Catalonia’s local delicacies, is similar to a leek or spring onion & very tasty when barbecued, often times accompanied with Romesco sauce. They’ve become such a beloved staple of local cuisine that they’ve earned a Protected Geographic Indication label from the European Union!


How to best cook calçots…

When in Spain you will buy calçots in a large bundle. No need to clean them, they will be well cleaned by the heat of the barbecue flames – because flames are essential when cooking calçots properly. Place them in a row on the grill and turn them every few minutes until they are blackened all over apart from the green stalk.  You will know when your calçots are ready, when a little of their juice starts to bubble from their blackened roots. Whip them off the barbecue and wrap them in several layers of newspaper. The newspaper allows them to steam a little as they cool, so that the outer leaves come off easily for eating.


How to eat calçots

Peel off the blackened outer layer, then dip the inner part in Romesco sauce. Romesco sauce is a spicy tomato-based garlicky sauce; which is perfect when matched with the subtle taste of calçots. Lift the calçot above your head so it hangs down vertically, tip your head back and lower the calçot into your mouth. Be warned that this is a pretty messy business!

If you are interested in learning more about traditional Spanish foods, we offer private cooking classes as well as the opportunity to enjoy eating many delicious local dishes. Our TOUR NAME gives you the opportunity to indulge in all kinds of local Spanish flavours and a chance to experience Gourmet cooking classes with professional local chefs – in true Catalan style!