There are many ingredients and dishes that are typical of Spain, but none more so than Jamón Ibérico which can only be found in the country. This dish is a relatively simple recipe that produces an excellent tapas dish which is very fancy and will impress all your friends, Spanish or not.
Jamón Ibérico is one of the most delicious Spanish hams because the pigs from which it derives are fed on a specific diet of acorns which gives the ham an intriguing, nutty flavour. Iberian pigs are born, fed and raised in the North-West and South of the Spanish peninsular where they are allowed to freely roam the forests but their ham is enjoyed throughout Spain. The combination of this free range lifestyle and their natural woodland diet gives Iberian ham its special flavour. Jamón Ibérico is particularly revered for its use in simple recipes such as this one, Foie Toast with Jamón Ibérico, where the flavour of the ham is allowed to shine through.
If you ever visit Spain, you must try Jamón Ibérico. Of course, you can buy a leg of ham or a pack of pre-sliced ham in the supermarket or via a specialist site on the internet, but if you want to make sure which is the best, then you should look out for a specialist shop or a gourmet store in Spain itself who can advise you on what to try. However do watch out for the high prices as they do not always mean quality!
Duck Foie is basically duck pâté but it is an excellent cooking ingredient that, despite having a long and established tradition in French cuisine, can be found throughout Spain in many Spanish food recipes including this one. Of course, if you really want to make an impression then you could use the famous (or infamous) Foie Gras which is the best of the best when it comes to duck pâté, but also one of the most expensive. The smooth texture of the foie adds to the crunchy bread and the chewy Jamón to give this dish a range of textures and flavours.
The combination of all of these high quality ingredients, packed with full flavours, means that this Spanish dish is sure to impress. However, it is also for this reason that you will very rarely find this dish on the tapas recipes of your local tapas bar when you come to work or study in Spain. Nonetheless, it is definitely worth trying!
This dish is extremely moreish but make sure you follow our golden rules in order to produce the best dish. Firstly, jamón ibérico should never be eaten cold, but rather at room temperature. Jamón Ibérico is also meant to be sliced wafer thin because otherwise it would be too tough to chew. Cooking the wine and onion mixture the day before is a good idea as it will really help to capture and lock in the flavours. Also, a good wine will obviously cost more but will be worth it as it will mean the taste of the caramelised onions is better. Also, don't forget to get enough wine for the recipe as well as for the chef and other diners!