EASTER is a really big deal Spain with huge crowds of spectators lining the streets to watch the Semana Santa processions and all that religious fervour can work up quite an appetite.
Visitors may be surprised at the lack of focus on chocolate Easter eggs but there are plenty of other scrumptious traditional Spanish treats to mark the occasion.
The most famous and essential of all Easter dishes in Spain is their very own version of French toast. Thick chunks of bread soaked in milk, fried and oozing sweet syrup, these iconic torrijas are as much a part of Semana Santa as pointy hats and religious statues.
They are on sale everywhere from restaurants to bakeries or you can easily make your own at home.
READ MORE: Three Michelin-starred chef Dabiz Muñoz reveals winning recipe for Spain’s famous Torrijas
These beautiful flower shaped treats are traditionally found in Castilla-La Mancha and Castille y Leon regions but you’ll find them for sale across Spain.
Prepared from egg, flour and milk and of course sugar, Spanish housewives traditionally used to compete to make the most beautiful ones with the flower-shaped moulds passed down from generation to generation.
La Mona de Pascua
If this brioche bun looks familiar it is because it bears striking resemblance to Spain’s Roscon de Reyes Christmas cake.
Particularly popular in Catalunya and Valencia regions, the cakes are given as gifts to children at Easter and often now contain a chocolate egg at the centre rather than the traditional boiled egg of days of old.
Buñuelos de viento
While this dessert can be found all year round it is especially popular in Semana Santa. Essentially a fried doughnut, these very sweet treats are basically fried dough balls covered with sugar. Bueñuelos are typical in every region but the best ones can be found in Andalucia, and are especially good in Granada.
Also a popular dish at Christmas, Pestiños are a traditional Spanish pastry made from flour, aniseed, and olive oil. Especially popular across southern Spain, you’ll find them glazed with honey and sprinkled with sugar.
Potaje de Vigilia
For those who, heaven forbid, don’t have a sweet tooth, there is an essential Easter savoury dish to be tasted.
This hearty stew made with cod, chickpeas, spinach and garlic and hard-boiled egg is traditionally served on Good Friday. It is known as ‘Vigil stew’ supposedly as it is eaten by the faithful as they await the resurrection.