The capital of the Costa del Sol and one of the biggest cities in Spain, Malaga boasts an impressive history and a fascinating present. The historic centre, together with the vibrant port area, has been declared an Historic and Artistic Conservation Area and a Site of Cultural Interest. As you wander the streets of the historic centre, defined by houses and buildings with rounded corners, enchanting plazas and gardens, your senses will come alive. The series ‘Cocina en Origen’ visits the capital of the Costa del Sol to showcase a healthy recipe that speaks of the local culinary tradition: gazpachuelo de descarte.
The city has a great deal to offer visitors. In addition to sixteen beaches and boundless leisure activities, there is an extensive collection of points of interest, around 40 world-class museums and a cuisine - spearheaded by espetos de sardinas and pescaíto frito - that will seduce you. As you get to know the city, you won’t be able to help noticing the cheerful and welcoming attitude of the locals, who have been harmoniously sharing their city with visitors for decades. The markets are a great way to experience authentic Malaga. These public spaces distill the essence of the local culinary tradition and are bursting with the freshest, highest quality and locally sourced products. You simply have to visit Atarazanas with its Neo-Mudejar at least once. Every day, the market is stocked with fish freshly caught from the Malaga bay and produce grown in the agricultural land in Guadalhorce Valley. Samuel Perea visits Atarazanas market in search of the ingredients needed to make today’s recipe.Equipped with everything he needs for the recipe, Samuel makes his way to El Pimpi, one of the most well-known restaurants in Malaga. It is no exaggeration to say that people from all over the world come to El Pimpi. Artists and celebrities, including one of the most famous city-dwellers of all time, Antonio Banderas, have made this extraordinary tavern their local. El Pimpi is a trail-blazer when it comes to cuisine, creating an irresistible environment that attracts both locals and visitors.
El Pimpi is an extraordinary place, designed to feed you a good meal, make you feel good and fall in love. A space that embraces you from the moment you arrive, immediately making you feel at home; just like any house in the Mediterranean. Together with chef Andrés Romero, Samuel Perea discovers the secrets to a traditional recipe from Malaga: gazpachuelo de descarte. Descarte, meaning ‘rejected’ or ‘discarded’, refers to quality fish that doesn’t have much commercial value. To make the dish, Samuel Perea bought two fish from Atarazanas market: bream and croaker, a close relative to sea bass.
Recipe for gazpachuelo de descarte
- The first step is to clean and gut the fish. Carefully remove the fillets and set to one side.
- Add the bones and heads of the fish to a pan of boiling water.
- Add some bay leaves, salt and pepper.
- Peel a carrot, cut it into slices and add to the pan.
- Julienne an onion and also add to the pan.
- Chop a huevo de toro variety tomato and add to the pan.
- Then peel three small potatoes and add to the pan to create a stock.
- Leave to boil for 15 minutes.
- As the stock and the potatoes cook, prepare the mayonnaise. Put three egg yolks in a bowl and whisk, slowly incorporating extra virgin olive oil. Add a squeeze of lemon and keep whisking until it combines.
- When the stock is ready and the potatoes are soft, add the fish fillets and clams to the pan and cook for a couple of minutes. You will know it is ready when the clams open and the fish is cooked yet still soft.
- Slowly add the stock to the mayonnaise, keeping whisking until it forms a smooth paste.
- In a bowl, place the potatoes, fish fillets and clams, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and add the delicious gazpachuelo.
The flames used to cook pescaíto frito and espetos de sardinas fill the beaches of Malaga with an unique and unmistakable aroma. This, combined with the hearty stews, meat dishes and fresh produce, come together to create a culinary tradition that your taste buds will thank you for. That said, gastronomy is just one of many reasons to spend time in Malaga. A historic centre brimming with artistry, about forty museums, the most exclusive boutiques and stores and an atmosphere that enraptures. The capital of the Costa del Sol is one of those cities that many people pass through but end up making a second home.