Food in the Spanish north east interior includes fresh vegetables from Navarra, fruit from Aragon.
There are also a variety of meats to enjoy. All those ingredients can be cooked in the splendid Rioja wines.
Aragonese cuisine is brisk and invigorating, as a stroll through its mountains; pork, olive oil, the delicious local Teruel ham, and trout from Pyrenean Streams are on display. Tomato, onion, garlic, ham and roasted peppers unite to make smooth sauces and unforgetable accompaniments. The region's luscious vegetables and fruit—especially peaches- star in many of the traditional dishes.
Among the traditional dishes, ternasco asado (roast lamb), chicken and lamb chilindrón (in a red pepper sauce), magro con tomate (fried smoked ham with tomato sauce), partridge in chocolate sauce, cardoons in almond sauce, peaches in wine, stand out.
La Rioja and Navarra
Both enjoy an extraordinary supply of vegetables from the gardens growing along the Ebro river. Artichokes, asparagus, leeks, chard, red peppers, particularly piquillo peppers, tender lettuce hearts, and delicate white beans -called pochas- are canned in gourmet jars and appreciated all over Spain; those same vegetables show up in stews, casseroles and salads. Potatoes, chorizo sausage and salt cod are frequent ingredients in local dishes.
The traditional specialties feature esparragos en vinagreta (asparagus with vinaigrette dressing), menestra de verduras (a mix of stewed and fried vegetables), grilled baby lamb chops, patatas a la riojana (potato and chorizo casserole), white bean stew with quail or hare, and stuffed peppers.