Looking for Sea Urchins, Food of the Gods in Costa Brava

Erizo

The sea urchins are one of the most typical edible treasures in the Catalunya region in Spain, especially in the Costa Brava of Girona.

Even though they could be found in every sea, they’re more popular in Spain’s kitchen as well as Peru, Chile, France and Japan...so I took myself to Girona to try such a rated dish.

It was the food of the ancient Greek gods…aphrodisiac, according to them and a dish that doesn’t need to be cooked. The best way of having it is taken right out the water with a piece of fresh bread…or if you want, you can have it with morcilla, sausages and house wine, to turn it into a the famous ‘’Sea and Mountain’’ of Catalunya, as Joan taught me .

Sea urchins eat plankton, sea weed and mussels. Males and females are identical in the outside but they can be distinguished by their color and flavor inside. Females are sweeter while males have a more complex yet more balanced and stronger flavor (like it always happens, he he!)

Recently caught urchins are a delicacy…how can I explain you? They have a spectacular sea flavor without being intense to the palate. If you get as lucky as me that could eat like 20 of them with just bread, you’ll see they’re a total religious experience!!!

The best season to eat them is during the winter…when they are bigger and flavorful. But what you eat are their ‘’toungues’’ as chef Gastón Acurio from Perú says, “yolks” or “caviar de oricio” as they call it in Asturias...not to tell you they are talking about their reproductive organs. With the interior juice of the urchins they make ‘’sofritos’’, sauces, foams and dressings because the sea flavor is pure.

Although nowadays you can find sea urchins in preserve and even frozen, nothing like eating them just right out the water and enjoying their full magic. Some people like them in ‘’tiradito’’, ceviche, sushi, salads, rice or even in pasta, “chupe” or soups…anything goes as long as their nature is kept. 

Joan scared me telling me that they were high in calories but the truth is they’re very low in calories and very high in proteins and rich in Omega 3, iron, phosphorus, potassium and vitamins. 

Well, sea urchins sting but don’t bite and Spanish food either!!! Thanks to the team of  Tourism of Spain and Catalunya for all the love!!!

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Doreen is an Editor of:

 

Doreen is Celebrity Chef of:

Novo Nordisk

 

Doreen supports:

Baptist Health Foundation

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