Let’s talk about chorizo, a sausage you must try during your stay in Asturias. Did I say sausage?It’s much more than that: a deep red, smoky spicy paprika and garlic flavored delicacy that comes in a variety of shapes and sizes.
And of course chorizo is part of the Asturian food culture. Loads of recipes feature this delicious sausage, from hearty stews like fabada Asturiana and its cousin the pote, to chorizo a la sidra, chorizo omelette, chorizo and eggs, not forgetting the iconic bollo preñao or bun-in-the-oven, a wonderfully satisfying chorizo stuffed bread roll… the list is endless. Or just try slicing it and eating it as is (preferably with a chunk of that fantastic Oscos bread I’ve been raving about).
The Spanish have been eating chorizo for hundreds of years, since the 16th century after Christopher Columbus apparently brought back paprika from his voyage to the Americas. That’s when they started using it to spice their pork.
Tucked away in La Roda, a little village up the road from Tapia de Casariego, there is a tiny family-run chorizo factory. The quality and flavor of the cured sausages they produce is simply exquisite, so much so that their customers come from all over Spain, including several renowned Michelin-starred chefs.
The founder of the business was born in 1925. He learnt the recipe from his great-grandmother when he was a little lad, and today his daughter Ines runs the show, going out of her way to use the traditional methods favored by her father and grandfather before her.
The chorizos are sold in a small shop at the entrance of Ines’ house, the small factory itself being round the back. Annexing the house to the factory used to be common practice in Asturias, but not anymore.
The secret of this premium chorizo is the quality of the meat. In La Roda, they only use the leanest of pork to produce the weekly batch of chorizo, which is how they can guarantee that the product is always fresh. Why not come and try it yourselves!