5 Dishes to Order on Your Costa del Sol Holiday

They do a mean fry-up on the Costa del Sol. But ditch the all-day English breakfast in favour of the local fare. That way you'll really be able to savour an authentic Andalusia.

Beat the heat – Gazpacho


Although nothing seems to refresh as much as an ice-cool lager, the alcohol actually dehydrates you. A more effective summer cooler is gazpacho. In the fiery temperatures of June through to August, Andalucians appreciate a cold soup.

Traditionally, a mortar and pestle is used to pound cucumber, garlic, onion, pepper, and tomato. Later, after the addition of soaked stale bread, comes olive oil, salt, water and wine vinegar. The final touch is ordinarily a garnish made of some familiar ingredients: chopped cucumber, onion, pepper, and tomato.

Fish dish – Pescaito frito

Pescaito - boquerones 

Fried fish, pescaito frito, is a staple on many a Costa del Sol restaurant menu. What particular fish it is depends on what local fisherman have brought back in their latest haul. Catches of the day, however, tend to include boquerones (anchovies), cazón (dogfish), and sardinas (sardines), lightly coated in flour before meeting a skillet of hot olive oil.

This dish is not particulary unique to the Costa del Sol. However, its pronunciation and spelling is. Elsewhere, pescadito means little fish. In laid-back Andalucia, they drop the d to create a false regional speciality.

In the garlic – Ajoblanco


Another chilled item appetiser comes in the form of ajoblanco, which literally translates as white garlic. This soup is also known as white gazpacho. Comprising bread, crushed almonds, garlic, olive oil, salt ,vinegar, and water, it's usually partnered with grapes or melon.

So popular is this starter that it even has its own festival. On the 2nd September in the town of Almáchar, Málaga, they celebrate the Día de Ajoblanco. Ajoblanco Day is an unmissable event, if you're in the area.

Nice rice – Arroz con leche

Arroz con leche

Arroz con leche is Andalusia's take on a rice pudding. A cold dessert, cinnamon, canela, sexes up this postre. This was a spice brought to southern Spain by the Moors and one that stayed, even after the Reconquest which saw the Moors expelled.

The spice of life - Gambas al Pil-Pil

Gambas al Pil-Pil 

Prawns served with a spicy sauce are what the Andalusians know and love as gambas al pil-pil. The salsa is made up of a combination of garlic, paprika, chillies, and white wine. Cooked in an oven-proof dish, this starter arrives to your table sizzling.