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Tasting Christmas

Typical Christmas pastries are an important part of Spanish gastronomy. Each region or province has its own sweet specialties, which are made with ingredients such as almonds, honey, sugar, butter, flour, eggs, fruits and spices. These are some of the most popular:


They are a sweet mass of honey and almonds that can be soft or hard. The most famous are those of Jijona and Alicante. There are also other varieties such as chocolate, yolk, fruit or coconut.


It is an almond and sugar paste that is molded into different shapes, such as figures, fruits or animals. The best known is the Toledo marzipan. Other sweets derived from marzipan are the Pastel de Gloria or the “Pan de Cadiz”.


These are pastries made of flour, butter and sugar that melt in the mouth. They are typical of Andalusia, especially Estepa, in the province of Seville. They can be found in different flavors, such as lemon, cinnamon, chocolate or almond.


They are similar to polvorones, but more compact and with a greater variety of ingredients. They originated in Antequera, but have spread throughout Spain. Some of the most popular are coconut, wine or anise. But the recipe we like best is the olive oil mantecado. In this recipe, the lard is replaced by extra virgin olive oil, providing natural antioxidants to the traditional mantecados. The pieces are presented with a maximum weight of 35 g per unit, except those with olive oil and the so-called “caseros” or “artesanos” (with a greater amount of almonds), which can reach up to 50 gr.

Roscón de Reyes:

It is a sweet dough bun decorated with slices of candied fruit, which is eaten on January 6, the day of the Three Kings. Inside the roscón are hidden a figurine and a bean, which bring luck or bad luck to the one who finds them. Some roscones are also filled with cream, cream, chocolate or truffle.


These are candied almonds with sugar, which are used as decoration or as an accompaniment to other sweets. They are originally from Valencia, where they have been made since the 18th century. They can be found in different colors and flavors, such as vanilla, lemon or cinnamon.

These are just some examples of the typical Christmas pastries that can be tasted in Spain. There are many more, such as yemas de Santa Teresa, puff pastries, neules (similar to wafers), pestiños, alfajores, buñuelos or huesos de santo.

Picture: Mantecados El Santo

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