It was an evening any foodie or accomplished cook would love – a showcase of the finest, authentic Spanish food presented by none other than the Spain Tourism Board. Held in conjunction with the exclusive screening of the Asian Food Channel’s culinary adventure TV series, “Spain on the Road Again,” the gastronomic feast held at Spotlight, Don Chino Roces Avenue, Makati, illustrated why Spain is considered one of the best culinary destinations worldwide.
Guests sampled a wide variety of tapas, paella, sangria, and Spanish wines. They were also treated to a mouth watering Spanish cooking exhibition by the owner and head chef of Tapella by Gaudi, Chef Alexandra Got Pradera Cacho. VIPs learned how to cook dishes like Pescado ala sal, or fish baked in salt, Sobra sada, or a Spanish sausage or paté, and paella, a rice-based viand, the way the Spanish do it.
Attended by distinguished members of the Spanish community, travel trade specialists, valued clients of BPI Mastercard and VIPs, the Spain Tourism Board’s culinary fiesta served as a venue for the public to experience the complexity of Spanish cuisine.
To complement the celebration, participants watched the gastronomic adventures of Mario Batali, Gwyneth Paltrow, Mark Bittman and Claudia Bassols in the Mallorca episode of “Spain on the Road Again.” Shown only on the Asian Food Channel, the series details the carefree, road-trip of four celebrities as they savor the best food Spain has to offer.
Participants were also regaled with dance and musical performances by the Fundacion Centro Flamenco, the premier Flamenco institute in the country that aims to preserve and enhance Filipino’s Spanish heritage through Spanish music and dance, and the Yerbaguena musicians.
Spanish fare is as diverse as its culture. The country’s Ebro region is known for its Chilindrones or pepper, tomato and fried onion sauce, and longaniza, or sausage. While, the Aragón fare is simple, clear cut and uses meat as a base. Catalan cooking is the most flavorful and complex which uses sofrito or a combination of garlic, tomato, parsley and onion, picada which includes chopped pine seeds, garlic, parsley, toasted almond, ali-oli or a mixture of olive oil and garlic and samfaina sauces.
Spain’s traditional paella originates from Valencia. The region specializes in rice-based dishes that are either prepared with a plethora of ingredients or only with the most basic elements. Andalucia is known for its fried food, particularly the deep fried fish pescaito frito. It also supplies the best ham in Spain —the Jabugo of Huelva.
Castile – León and Central Spain, on the other hand, focus on roast meats and stews or cocidos. Seafood and sauces dominate the fare in Northern Spain including Galicia and Asturias.
Hosted by the Spain Tourism Board, the “Spain on the Road Again” food fiesta and screening was done in partnership with the Asian Food Channel, Tapella by Gaudi, BPI Mastercard, Gastro Chef, Trucco, Fuego Hotels and Properties, L’oreal, and Amoroso.