7 Bizarre Meals to try in Madrid

By Lauren Aloise

Madrid is a food lover’s paradise, complete with upscale markets and some of the best in modern Spanish cuisine. But among its traditional taverns and avant-garde dining rooms, adventurous eaters can experience some of the city’s most bizarre food specialties.

At tapas bars and restaurants all around the city, patrons pull up a chair to enjoy these 7 bizarre Madrileño foods– would you care to join them?

1. Tripe Stew

Callos a la Madrileña is one of the city’s most emblematic dishes. This Madrid style tripe stew uses veal or lamb tripe, and the pig’s snout and hoof for flavor. It is cooked very slowly and often accompanied by chorizo, blood sausage, serrano ham and garbanzo beans. Rich and flavorful, it is a popular winter dish.

2. Grilled Pig’s Ear

Oreja a la plancha is another popular dish found around the city. Try your pig’s ear with garlic, or in a spicy sauce.

3. Fried Blood with Onions

Sangre frita con cebolla is a Spanish dish for the daring. Made by cutting boiled blood into thin slices and frying them in olive oil with some sliced onions, it may not be the most popular dish in the city, but those who love it defend it dearly!

4. Stewed Oxtail

A good rabo de toro melts in your mouth and leaves you asking yourself why you haven’t been eating this all your life! The thick sliced oxtail is stewed in tomato, garlic and wine until it falls away from the bone and makes for a delicious Spanish delicacy.

5. Fried Squid Sandwich

Crispy fried calamari rings stuffed in fresh bread make this traditional Spanish bocadillo de calamares all the rage in Madrid. Eat one when you are on the go, or to accompany a few Spanish beers while relaxing in one of Madrid’s beautiful plazas.

6. Kidneys in Sherry

Made with very fresh veal or lamb kidneys, riñones al jerez is a common tapa in Madrid’s most traditional taverns. The tender kidneys are stewed in sherry wine with some garlic and onion.

7. Marinated Partridges

Cooked and marinated in vegetable stock, wine and vinegar, perdices en escabeche are left to marinate at least a few days before being served at room temperature with hard boiled egg and tomato. A classic recipe that originates from the need to preserve food, many Madrid families have their preferred version.

There they are, 7 Bizarre Foods in Madrid— do you think they are strange snacks or are they your average fare?

Mmm, want more food inspiration? See 8 Exciting Food Markets and  50 of the World’s Best Breakfasts

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Lauren Aloise is the founder of Madrid Food Tour. An optimistic entrepreneur and self-proclaimed professional tapa taster, she writes, tweets, and cooks out of her tiny Madrileño apartment.

Thanks to shiladsen, jlastras, deramaenrama, Lauren Aloise, jlastras, lwy, eltito, jlastras for the images off Flickr. Please note, all images were suitable for use at time of publication under the Creative Commons License.

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