A capital idea!
Anyone lucky enough to be in Mallorca this week can get to sample some of the best traditional food and dishes from Spain's capital, Madrid, thanks to an initiative from Spain's big El Corte Ingles department store and the Association of Centennial Restaurants and Taverns of Madrid.
The two have teamed up to bring dishes made from recipes hundreds of years old to the restaurants of the big stores all over the country. Here in Mallorca, the store on Palma's Avenidas, just down from the Plaza Espana will be preparing the most famous dishes of one of Madrid's oldest taverns, the Taberna Antonio Sanchez.
Possibly the oldest bar in Madrid, it first opened its doors in 1787 – yes, just as the French Revolution got underway – and its exterior, décor and dishes haven't changed a bit for at least 150 years. It's all old stained wood, tiles, old cash registers and thanks to a bullfighter owner in the past, a couple of bulls heads have 'graced' the walls for around 200 years.
Obviously the décor and atmosphere in the El Corte Ingles restaurant are a little different, but with the aid of the Taberna's owner and head chef, the dishes available from 9th to 15th March will be 100% genuine.
Lucky punters can sample some of the heartiest of hearty food that is so famous in what can be a bitterly cold capital for many months of the year. On the menu are;
cocido madrileño – a warming stew of chickpeas, black pudding, chorizo (that's choreetho for any TV chefs reading this) and vegetables
caracoles – snails
callos a la madrileña – tripe, chorizo, ham, pork, vegetables
Rabo de Toro al estilo Antonio Sánchez – oxtail stew
Torrija – half French toast, half bread and butter pudding (ish)
Well, I'm feeling a little peckish already. Will you be going along to try the cuisine?
Tip – don't be put off by the word tripe. Cooked this way, it's soft, succulent and rather delicious.