The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Spanish Breads?

Terk's picture

Spanish Breads?

  • I've been scouring the internet for weeks now, looking for authentic recipes from Spain. I have a presentation coming up for my Spanish class, and wanted to wow my peers with something exciting. Now, while I realize that Spain isn't exactly the yeasted-bread capital of the world, I refuse to believe that generations of culinary achievement have only produced a few questionable recipes of Pan de Muerto (the only recipe my searching turned up.) Does anyone have bread recipes that reflect some of Spain's wonderful culture and cuisine? Any background information you can give on recipes would also be appreciated, even if you just suggest a book to look up. Bonus points go to anyone who posts in Spanish. (I could use the practice. :) )

mariana's picture


Aqui tienes mas de veinte recetas de pan tipico espanol, con las fotos de como lucen.

Que tengas suerte con tu presentacion, Terk.

ehanner's picture

Mariana, this post is a good example of the value of an Internet community. What a nice contribution.


susanfnp's picture

Buenos días, Terk.

[Trying my best in Spanish:]

Aquí (en mi blog) está una receta de tortas de aceite, hechas en Sevilla. No sé si serían llamadas panes, pero las tortas se hacen de la pasta de pan. Es muy fácil hacerlas y el gusto es maravilloso.

[And here's what I was trying to say:]

Here (on my blog) is a recipe for tortas de aceite, olive oil wafers made in Sevilla. I don't know if you would call them bread, but the tortas are made from bread dough. They are very easy to make and taste wonderful.

I adapted the recipe from a cookbook called La Cocina de Mamá: The Great Home Cooking of Spain, by Penelope Casas. I used a food processor to mix the ingredients, but I don't think this part is very authentic :-) so you could mix it by hand.

Mariana, that is a wonderful site!


Richelle's picture

Hola Terk,

He probado la receta de Susan y las tortas q me han salido saben muy simular a las q se puede comprar aqui en Andalucía! Buena suerte!


mercedesvarea's picture

The only (I think) Spanish bread with protected origin name ("denominación protegida") is PA DE CEA, a bread from GALICIA, where my father comes from. There is a very nice web site explaining how this bread is done:


In Galicia "rye bread" is also very traditional.


Where I come from, Catalonia, we have two very well-known breads: PA DE PAGÈS and LLONGUET. You can have a look at them:


Myself I have not tried these recipes.


In the web site of Patrimonio Gastronómico you will find some breads and many pastry specialities from Spain with recipe, although the pictures are not so nice: 


The website Mariana already said from Francisco Tejero is a very good one. I have a book of him, "Hacer pan es fácil", also with recipes. But his web site is more than enough. My children love his "galletas de Sahagún", not a bread but a cake!


I hope I could help you.





Terk's picture

Thanks for the great feedback everyone! Mariana, that website is simply a wonderful find. The recipes sound great, and the pictures are beautiful. That Pan de Tigre looks very interesting...

Susanfnp, it's nice to meet you; I've been checking out your site for awhile now. I'm envious of your ciabatta. :P

Mercedes, that llonguet looks very good, and uses the same technique for fendu from the Bread Baker's Apprentice. I'm going to try that one, thanks.


Richelle's picture

Hola Terk,

si, el sitio web del panadero Francisco tiene buena pinta, pero tengo q advertirte q no todas las recetas son de panes autenticas de España. Por ejemplo, el pan tigre es de origin holandés y se llama 'tijgerbrood'. Y Chapata es la respuesta español al 'hype' de ciabatta italiana....

Del llonguet me han hablado muchas personas de Barcelona, con muy buenas recuerdas, parece q hoy en día es dificil encontrar un autentico llonguet!

Saludos cordiales de Andalucía!


Alan Lesak's picture
Alan Lesak

Is this the equilalent of sour dough culture I keep alive in my refrigerator?

ChaShu's picture

Literally "Mother Dough", so probably a starter or poolish...

narabio's picture

I have the "Bread Baker's Apprentice" in spanish ("El Aprendiz de Panadero") and they use "Masa madre" as a translation of Sourdough starter...

I've told you before that almost no baker I've asked about Sourdough here in Spain, knew what I was talking about... When they said "Masa madre" they refered to either preferment (Polish, Pate Fermente, Biga, which the BBA leaves without translation.)

So if you see "Masa madre" in a formula, it could refer to any preferment (with or without commercial yeast)

As for a tipical Spanish bread... I live near Barcelona, in Catalonia. People here use to buy Baguette, Ciabatta or (as someone has said) "Pà de Pagès" (more or less it means peasant bread), wich is a simple white wheat bread... Nothing very special.

There is something (I think) from Catalonia, very similar to the pizza or foccacia, which is Coca de recapte.

Richelle's picture

The correct translation for sourdough would be 'masa fermentada'. As I understand it, the term 'masa madre' used to refer to a piece of old dough added to a new batch to improve flavor. This method isn't much used anymore, sadly enough as it would improve the bland flavor of most (mostly white) breads you can buy here locally. Nowadays the term 'masa madre' is widely used for a sourdough starter.

And as for a famous Andalucian bread, or rather, soft roll, try google for 'mollete de Antequera' and you'll find lots of recipes.


Abracaboom's picture

Here's a link to a page with a video on how to make good pa de pagès. If you know how to make rustic bread with preferment ( you can follow along even if you don't know the lingo. The only difference I can tell is that first you mix only the flour and the water, you let the mix sit for 40 minutes, and then you add your preferment, your salt and your yeast.

tanyclogwyn's picture

Its perhaps a bit late in the day to suggest additional recipes, but PC's recipes in Foods and Wines of Spain (US pb 1982, UK 1985) (which may be different to 'The Great Home Cooking of Spain and not pub in UK I think) are thought provoking: long preferments without yeast (which is added later), the use of cornmeal mush, rye flour and barley flour. 

The latter two are clearly solid loaves - none of your light stuff!  She also makes sensible and informed comments on adjusting to different flour styles in US for Spanish recipes, and vice versa.

I'll try one when I have a three day run-in - and for those in Europe the quantites are all in cups.