Olla de San Antón
Friday January 15, 2016
Traditions in Granada
In January 17th, just when we tried to follow a diet after Christmas excesses, we celebrate San Anton’s day in Granada dedicate to Saint Anthony the Abbot, patron and protector of animals and shepherds. During these days, it is customary to taste a dish called “Olla de San Anton” (San Anton’s pot) which is delicious but it is recommended nevertheless for brave people only.
Saint Anthony the Abbot was born in the Lower Egypt and it is said that on his 20th birthday, he sold his properties and gave the money to the poor. After that, he settled at the mountains where he lived like a hermit. He looked after the animals and helped other people to follow a life dedicated to spirituality.
For those reasons, San Anton is the saint patron and protector of animals and many towns at the mountains such as Monachil in Granada or Torvizcon in the Alpujarras. In other towns like Armilla placed in the area of “La Vega de Granada”, people set bonfires in his honor. On San Anton’s day eve, in Polícar, people go scavenging for wood and gather in the evening for a huge bonfire where they drink and eat.
During these days, restaurants and bars in the city of Granada, prepare “Olla de San Anton”. This dish is a stew typical from Granada although it can be found in some places in Jaen and Murcia also. It is a delicious dish but its high calorie value makes it not suitable for people on a diet! Indeed it is fit for peasants who needed to be prepared for the cold weather in Granada in winter. Main ingredients of the “Olla de San Anton” are: broad beans, green beans and products from the slaughtering season, e.g. black pudding, chorizo (pork sausage), ham.
Nowadays, it is difficult to find a restaurant serving the original recipe because it is usually served a light version.
Anyway, for those who wanted to protect themselves from the cold with this delicious stew, for those who fell nostalgic about Granada and would like to cook for more that two hours or simply for those being hungry, here you have the recipe! And..
Olla de San Antón
Ingredients for 4 people
• 1/4 Kg. of broad beans
• 100 g of white beans
• 1 onion
• 1 pimiento choricero (capsicum annuum)
• 1 head of garlic
• 1 pork backbone
• 1 hambone
• 100 g pork ribs
• 100g bacon
• 1 pig’s ear
• 1 pork tail
• 100g. salted cured bacon
• 2 cups of rice
• 2 potatoes
First of all, we have to leave the broad beans and the white beans to soak on the day before.
And on the next day, we are prepared to cook. Firstly, peel the onion and cut it in big pieces. Wash the pork back bones, ribs and hambones and place them with the rest of ingredients except for the rice, the black pudding and the potatoes in a pot with water and salt. Water must cover the ingredients. It is recommended to use a clay pot, but if we do not have it, we can use another kind of pot except a pressure cooker. The secret of this dish is to cook over a low heat.
After one hour and a half, peel and cut the potatoes and add them to the pot with the rice and the black pudding.
Cook for 30 minutes more a serve the stew of legumes, potatoes and rice in a plate and meat in another plate. This recipe goes well with a good win and pickels.