Bravíssssimas!!

The emblem of Spanish pubs and bars, patatas bravas are a relatively recent invention from the 1960s which have been attributed to Madrid. But today no city or town in the entire Iberian Peninsula is lacking decent patatas bravas, including, of course, Barcelona. Here the Catalan culinary tradition rules, enriches and perfects patatas bravas. Sybarites replace the classic tomato sauce (or even worse, ketchup) with a baroque blend which always contains “nyora” dried peppers and the national nut par excellence, the hazelnut (see recipe). Despite the infinite varieties, the essential ingredients are of course potatoes cut into chunks and guindilla pepper, whose spiciness alludes to their name patatas bravas, or spicy potatoes.

The emblem of Spanish pubs and bars, patatas bravas are a relatively recent invention from the 1960s which have been attributed to Madrid. But today no city or town in the entire Iberian Peninsula is lacking decent patatas bravas, including, of course, Barcelona. Here the Catalan culinary tradition rules, enriches and perfects patatas bravas. Sybarites replace the classic tomato sauce (or even worse, ketchup) with a baroque blend which always contains“nyora” dried peppers and the national nut par excellence, the hazelnut (see recipe). Despite the infinite varieties, the essential ingredients are of course potatoes cut into chunks and guindilla pepper, whose spiciness alludes to their name patatas bravas, or spicy potatoes.

Which potato?

Experts say that the best potato for frying should have firm flesh and low starch levels. New or baby potatoes are best. There are tricks to keep them super-crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. Dunk them in cold water after peeling and cutting them, and fry them twice, the last time for just a few minutes in very hot oil.

The secret is in the sauce

1 ñora pepper seeded and blanched 3 cloves garlic 2 guindilla peppers 1/2 litre of extra virgin olive oil 1/2 cup of vinegar salt to taste 1 cup of coffee with cognac 100 g toasted hazelnuts 5 toasted slices of baguette 1.5 small cups of water 1 tablespoon of paprika Beat all the ingredients together until the sauce is smooth.

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