Castilian-Manchego cuisine refers to the typical dishes and ingredients in the cuisine of Castile–La Mancha region of Spain. These include pisto (a vegetable stew with tomato sauce), gazpacho manchego, Manchego (a type of cheese), the white wine of La Mancha, and the red wine from Valdepeñas (DO).
The dishes and specialties of the region are generally sober and sensible, reflecting a modest, rural origin. They contain a limited number of ingredients. Ingredients tend to be those most easily accessible by the locals. Dishes tend to be high in calories, ideal for the diets of laborers, farmers, and shepherds. The cuisine of this area was popularized by Cervantes in his Don Quixote de la Mancha, where a number of traditional dishes are mentioned.
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“Thank God for the passing of the discomforts and vile cuisine of the age of chivalry!”
—Mason Cooley (b. 1927)