Melt-in-your-mouth delicious wine and food in Jerez de la Frontera

19 Oct
2016
Last update: 20 January, 2020

Discover the history of wine and food in Jerez de la Frontera and try delicious recipes comfortably at home!

Jerez, just like whole Andalucia, is renowned for its delicious specialities and for being the cradle of the famous Sherry wine, alongside being the first stage of the Wine tour in the province of Cadiz. Let’s discover some delicious recipes of Jerez’s tastiest dishes and let yourself be impressed by the amazing history of the Sherry wine.

Amazing history of the wine of Jerez

The wine of Jerez, the famous sherry, has lived the hard life since it was “invented” by the Phoenicians. During those times, the wine was raw and with a very high alcohol content. After conquering the area, the Romans started exporting the wine.

In 711 AD, when the Arabs conquered Spain, the wine was prohibited. However, in 966, the inhabitants of Jerez managed to convince caliph Alhaken II not to strip the vineyards from the soil of Jerez’s hills, by affirming that the raisins were a great allied of the soldiers.

Vineyards with grapes

When the Catholic Reconquest reached Jerez in 1264, the Christians used to drink wine to differentiate themselves from the Muslims. It was then when the wine started to be sent to the United Kingdom. In fact, the denomination derives from the Arab name of Jerez, “Sherish”, which later on translated into “sherry” to identify this specific wine.

Its fame spread so much in the following centuries that the King decided to make it a protected item of the region, it was exported to the United Kingdom, France and the Netherlands, and the ships leaving for America all have one-third of their load, especially for the wine.

The Jerez got famous in the English courts thanks to Francis Drake’s fleet, which attacked Cadiz and Jerez in 1587, stealing more than 3000 wineskins. Later on, English businessmen started a more pacific business with Jerez, to import the wine in the United Kingdom.

In 1935, the Jerez-Xérès-Sherry DO (Denominación de Origen, a classification system used for Spanish wines and foods) was created to identify this precious wine worldwide.

Barrels with Sherry wine typical of Jerez

Nowadays, the Jerez has converted into a renowned characteristic of the area of Cadiz, and people use it in many of the recipes typical of this region.

You can find some of them if you keep reading!

Riñones al Jerez

Kidneys with Jerez sherry

This way of preparing kidneys braised in sherry will make your mouth water!

Recipe for four people:

  • ½ kg of kidneys
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 tablespoon of flour
  • ½ tablespoon of sweet pepper
  • 6 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup of water
  • ½ glass of Jerez wine
  • Salt
  • Parsley
  1. Boil some water.
  2. Cut the kidneys into slices, add salt and put them on the upside-down lid of a saucepan.
  3. Let them release the liquid for about 10 minutes.
  4. Rinse abundantly with cold water.
  5. In a saucepan, put the olive oil and the onion. When the onion gets soft, add the kidneys and turn them for 5 minutes.
  6. Sprinkle them with the flour and the sweet pepper, turn them and rapidly add the ½ cup of water, the garlic and parsley.
  7. Let them cook for 4 minutes and then add the Jerez wine, until the sauce hardens.

Ajo Caliente

Garlic soup typical of Jerez

The Ajo Caliente is a garlic soup, which the farmers and those who harvested used to eat to preserve their strengths. It is barato, that is to say, it is made with cheap ingredients. The original recipe has been slightly modified, by adding chopped chorizo and hard-boiled eggs to make it even tastier!

[rul_Schedule]Recipe for four people:

  • ½ kg of ripe tomatoes
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 3 green peppers
  • Salt
  • 250 gr. of one-day-old bread
  • 1 l of water
  • 200 ml of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 peeled radishes
  1. Gently mash the cloves of garlic with the salt.
  2. Add the green peppers cut into small pieces and the mashed ripe tomatoes without the skin.
  3. Add the extra-virgin olive oil.
  4. Let the water boil, and pour it slowly over the garlic.
  5. Cut the bread into very thin slices, crush it and add it to the garlic.
  6. Cover it with a cloth and let it rest for five minutes.
  7. Serve it hot.[/rul_schedule]

Meloja

The Meloja made with honey and pumpkin
Meloja. Photo by Bego González

This sweet was used to be given to kids as a prize when they behave well. Nowadays, you can eat this kind of marmalade on top of fresh cheese or a slice of French toast.

Recipe:

  • Lime water
  • Water
  • ½ kg of honey
  • 1 kg of peeled pumpkin
  1. Cut the pumpkin into small slices and put them in the lime water.
  2. Let it rest 4/5 hours so that the pumpkin hardens.
  3. Boil half of a pot of water and a little bit of honey.
  4. Add the pumpkin slices and the honey in dribs and drabs.
  5. Let it cook over medium heat.
  6. The sauce that forms from the cooking will serve as a preservative for the slices of pumpkin.
  7. Once the pumpkin is cooked on the inside and stiff on the outside, serve it accompanied by the preservative sauce.

Wine and food in Jerez are melt-in-your-mouth delicious! Wait no more and enjoy the opportunity of discovering them.

Have you ever tried any of these specialities? Did you know the history behind the Sherry? Tell us in the comments below!

Melt-in-your-mouth delicious wine and food in Jerez de la Frontera is an article that talks about Cuisine in Cadiz
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