Typical products of Murcia Region
Murcia's gastronomy is closely linked to Murcia's market garden, an international benchmark. But it also has a strong presence of seafood, rice dishes and products derived from the slaughter of pigs and game. These diverse influences come together to create a culinary offer that attracts gastronomy lovers from all over the world.
It could be said that it is impossible to talk about typical Murcian products without talking about peppers and tomatoes, which are also the basis of the region's cuisine. Although it is possible to add artichokes and aubergines to these two, which are eaten in the region in a thousand different ways to get the most out of their flavour.
But neither is it possible to understand this gastronomy without the sweetest part. Paparajotes, arrope, tocino de cielo, almonds in all kinds of preparations, or fruits such as peaches, apricots and plums.
Cheeses such as those from the D.O. Queso de Murcia and D.O. Queso de Murcia al Vino designations of origin, accompanied by wines such as those from the D.O. Jumilla or the I.G.P. Vinos de la Tierra Campo de Cartagena, round off a gastronomy that is an experience not to be missed if you visit the region.
Murcia's Denominations of Origin
The fact that the products of the Region of Murcia are excellent is not just something the locals say. Their quality is internationally recognised, and is certified by the eight Murcia Designations of Origin, as well as one product with Protected Geographical Indication and another with Traditional Speciality Guaranteed.
Wine, rice, paprika, pears, cheese... These are just some of the products that have been awarded Designation of Origin certification. But neither should we forget the I.G.P. Vinos de la Tierra Campo de Cartagena or the E.T.G. Jamón Serrano.
This is the oldest of them all, created in 1966, although it did not begin to show its full potential until the 1990s after a late phylloxera epidemic in the vineyards. After this episode, it opted for the cultivation of native grapes, mainly Monastrell, for the production of red, rosé and white wines together with imported varieties such as Merlot, Syrah or Cabernet Sauvignon. The wineries of the Jumilla D.O. are gaining more and more relevance in the national wine scene.
This is another of the main designations of origin in Murcia. Yecla is surrounded by almost 13,500 hectares of vineyards that are processed in small private wineries and cooperatives since the 1980s to produce red wines.
This is the youngest of all the appellations. It produces mainly red and rosé wines characterised by their freshness and the distinctive character provided by the native Monastrell grape.
D.O. Pimentón de Murcia
Paprika is an essential ingredient not only in the gastronomy of Murcia, but also in Spanish cuisine. This spice is the result of grinding red peppers of the bola variety, which are harvested ripe and left to dry. It gives food a strong and characteristic aroma, but it also has a great colouring power and adds an irresistible nuance to the flavour of food.
D.O. Calasparra Rice
Rice forms part of the basis of Murcian gastronomy, so it is not surprising that it is one of the products with a designation of origin in the region. It is one of the most famous for its hardness, its flavour and its capacity to absorb a large amount of water for aromatic preparations. It is grown in an area of mountainous terrain and a sunny, cold climate in the northwest of the Region of Murcia.
Jumilla Pear D.O.
If you were to ask what is grown in the orchards of Murcia, it is likely that one of the first answers you would get would be fruit. But the Jumilla pear of the Ercolini variety is the only one that has obtained this certification. It is characterised by its white, juicy flesh and very sweet flavour.
Murcia Cheese D.O.
Despite being mainly known for the products of the orchard and the sea, the cheeses of the Region of Murcia also have this certification. These cheeses are made from Murcian goat's milk and include Queso de Murcia Fresco and Queso de Murcia Curado.
D.O. Queso de Murcia al Vino (Murcia Cheese in Wine)
Like the cheeses of the D.O. Queso de Murcia, it is made with Murcian goat's milk. The difference is that in this case it is bathed in local wine, which gives its rind a reddish colour and adds aroma.
Products from Cartagena
It is impossible to talk about typical Murcian products without mentioning the Campo de Cartagena. Most of the vegetables and greens that form the basis of Murcian gastronomy are produced in this region.
But the products of Cartagena deserve to be recognised in their own right, as they have special features that are evidence of the port character of the area. One example is salted fish, an age-old form of preservation closely linked to its relationship with maritime trade since Roman times.
Caldero is one of its most typical dishes, the result of the combination of two of the region's best products, rice and fish from the Mediterranean and the Mar Menor. However, if there is one thing that Cartagena cannot be understood without, it is the products produced in the countryside, such as artichokes, tomatoes, peas and broad beans. These form the basis of such important local dishes as michirones.
To these we can add the wines from the I.G.P. Vinos de la Tierra Campo de Cartagena, whites, reds and rosés of great aroma and lightness. But neither can we forget other spirits such as the traditional Licor 43, one of the most emblematic of the country and the origin of Asian coffee, a coffee that mixes condensed milk, cognac, cinnamon, Licor 43 and lemon peel.
The gastronomic offer that Murcia and Cartagena have to offer seems inexhaustible, but it coincides in its authenticity. Products and dishes full of flavour that you can enjoy in the bars and restaurants in the area. Discover menus full of imagination, local produce and the smell of the sea in any of the restaurants at La Manga Club.