La Buenaventura is a family catering business creating homemade traditional Spanish cuisine – 100% plant based

An introduction to Spanish Cuisine:

Traditional Spanish cuisine is uncomplicated food based on the ingredients available locally and seasonally.

Countless cultures, passing through Spain or settling in it, have influenced the history of Spanish cuisine. The Phoenicians left their sauces; the Greeks taught Spain the virtues of olive oil, and the Romans, Carthaginians and Jews integrated elements of their gastronomy. However, the Arabs were the ones creating a more notable impact on Spanish cuisine.

The arrival to America of Christopher Columbus in 1492 resulted in the addition of more important elements to the history of Spanish cuisine. Among the products that crossed the Atlantic and landed on Spanish soil, tomatoes, vanilla, chocolate, legumes and potatoes became basic elements of the current Spanish cuisine.

Spanish cuisine varies so much from one region to another, partly due to Spain consisting of the different smaller kingdoms within the Iberian Peninsula united through their conquest, each of them with its own customs, and which have become today’s regions. Natural barriers separate these regions, which made it difficult to communicate and transport goods until last century.

A traditional way of enjoying Spanish cuisine is Tapas, small savoury dishes enjoyed standing up in a bar with your group of friends. The custom is to order several different tapas to share and accompany them with a glass of beer or wine. Once finished, make a move to the next bar and repeat the process with a new batch of tapas; something like a “culinary pub crawl”!

But how did this tradition begin?

It is widely believed that the tradition begun long ago in the southern city of Seville, where waiters used to cover the wine glasses with a plate to prevent flies from falling inside. Soon they started to put a simple slice of ham on the plate, which pleased their customers. They saw the possibility of attracting more clients and managers started to change the snack decorating the plates served with the wine, and this national phenomenon called Tapas was born.