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There is a fantastic tapas bar called “Mercado de la Reina” in Madrid that I take all my friends to when they visit.  The reason I enjoy the tapas so much at this bar in particular is that they take the “traditional” tapas recipes and tweak them just a bit, creating something familiar and yet entirely unique at the same time.

One of these dishes is a toasted piece of bread topped with spreadable Spanish sausage called sobrasada.  This sausage, originating from the island of Mallorca off the coast of Spain (which is gorgeous and also is the birthplace of the delicious ensaimada–more to come), is spiced and preserved with a lot of paprika, and is made from the “porc negre,” or “black pig,” which is apparently related to but slightly different from the oh-so-famous “jamón ibérico” on the mainland.

Spread the sobrasada over a fresh slice of baguette and top with a thin slice of brie, and toast lightly in an oven or toaster oven.  (You can also use a baguette that has gone stale if you can manage to break off a small piece.  The bread will soften as the toppings melt during toasting.)  For an added sweet kick–and in true Mercado de la Reina fashion–you can lightly drizzle the sobrasada with honey before placing the cheese on top and toasting.  Makes a fantastic snack or hors d’œuvre for a hosted event at your home.

I am not sure what the availability of sobrasada is abroad, but if there is none to be had, I found this recipe for the adventurous souls out there who might want to try to make a substitute.  The site also gives a U.S. substitute supplier.  For those who want to try their hand at curing their own sobrasada, the site suggests:

  • 2/3 of pork tenderloin
  • 1/3  fatback and lard in equal proportions.
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Hot paprika

Finely mince the meat, fatback, and lard and season with salt, pepper and hot paprika. Fill natural or artificial casings with the mixture and cure your sausages in a cool place of about 50ºF. For thinner sausages (about two inches in diameter) allow a minimum of two months for curing; for thicker ones (between three and five inches in diameter), allow four to five months.

I haven’t actually tried to cure sobrasada myself, so if you do it, please feel free to write in and share how it goes!  And if you are able to find some ready-made sobrasada, this really is the easiest, tastiest little treat that takes no time to make and is a unique addition to the menu!

One Response to “Easy Spanish Tapas: Sobrasada with Brie”

  1. […] of my favorite tapas from Mercado de la Reina (see Sobrasada with Brie) is a slice of toasted bread topped with a sweetened tomato jam and a slice of soft goat cheese. […]

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