Local Food Specialities in Lanzarote

Local Markets

Whilst the island caters for all tastes and diets, it is in the island's delicious Canarian cuisine that Lanzarote truly comes alive. The typical food of Lanzarote truly represents its geographic location, with influences in taste coming from Spain, Africa and America – with a surprising amount of locals preferring meat to fish, despite the fact that seafood is very close at hand.

Local Markets - Lanzarote Local Markets - Lanzarote

Whilst goat, beef and rabbit are typical favourites of Lanzarote residents, fresh seafood such as dorada (sea bream, also known as sama), vieja (parrot fish) and cherne (sea bass) are favourites when simply grilled, and served with papas arrugadas - the famous Canarian "wrinkled" potatoes, boiled in salt water and baked.

If you fancy trying some local fare away from the restaurants, markets are a great way of really sampling the island's flavour. The market in Arrecife is a favourite with visitors to the island, with local produce of meat, fruits and vegetables readily available. The market runs every Saturday on the south side of the town from 9am until 2pm.

For locals of Lanzarote, there are no places better than the Haría and Mancha Blanca markets. Though they are a fair distance from one another, both markets offer a real taste of Spain, with locals shopping for fruit, vegetables, meat and fish, including local specialities such as papas crias and cherry-plum tomatoes. The Haría market operates between 10am and 2pm most Saturdays, and the Mancha Blanca market on Sundays, between 9am and 2pm.

Speciality Dishes

Growing and rearing food hasn't always been easy for Lanzarote's farmers, and as the Villa Plus guide to Lanzarote explains, the farmers have has to be quite savvy to make the most out of the volcanic, infertile land that the island consists of.

As such, the Lanzarote people are proud of their culinary heritage, naming it the Cocina Conaria (The Canarian Kitchen) and the skills of great food production have truly been mastered. Many entirely local dishes are now enjoyed by locals and holidaymakers alike, and have filtered out into the rest of the Western world. Tapas is a great example of this, and you'll find these small plates in most bars on the island. Seafood is popular too, and are often reffered to as Frutas del Mar – fruits of the sea.

Speciality Lanzarote dishes include:

Sea Bream - Lanzarote
  • Conejo – baked or roasted rabbit served with garlic and herbs.
  • Pulpo – sliced octopus with olive oil and a pinch of paprika.
  • Papas arrugadas with mojos – potatoes with skins boiled in salt water, served with a tasty green herb, garlic and olive oil sauce, or a red oil, vinegar, chilli and pepper spicier sauce.
  • Lentejas – Lentils cooked with pumpkin, bacon, chorizo and peas.

Local Recipes

Afelia - Lanzarote

There is nothing more traditionally eaten in Lanzarote than the aforementioned papas arrugadas with either a mojo rojo or a mojo verde sauce. These salty potatoes and sauces are enjoyed frequently on the island by locals and visitors alike, and they are one of the easiestCanarian delicacies to recreate at home – either to re-experience the taste after a holiday, or to try it before you go. Either way, the recipes for all of these items are simple, affordable and incredibly tasty. Why not give it a go?

For the papas arrugadas, you'll need:

  • Small new potatoes
  • Sea salt – and a lot of it!

The first step is as simple as boiling the new potatoes for twenty minutes – except you need to add sea salt until the potatoes float. This may feel like too much salt, but this is the way the Canarians have done it for generations.

Once cooked, drain the majority of the water from the pot and cover the cooked potatoes with a layer of salt. Turn down the heat of the hob, and gently toss the potatoes so that they become coated in crystallised salt. Once you're happy that the potatoes are adequately salted, take the pot away from the heat and cover with a tea-towel for 5 minutes – this gives the potatoes that lovely wrinkled texture.

Sea Bream - Lanzarote

You'll want to serve these with the mojo sauces. For the mojo verde you'll need:

  • An entire bulb of garlic
  • One handful of fresh coriander
  • One teaspoon of sea salt
  • Half a teaspoon of cumin
  • 200ml of extra virgin olive oil
  • 50ml of white wine vinegar

To make, it couldn't be easier. Blend everything except the coriander and olive oil together until it's all finely chopped. Then, chop the coriander leaves by hand before slowing combining them with the mixture, gently adding the olive oil along the way.

For the mojo rouge, you'll need:

  • An entire bulb of garlic
  • Three dried chillies
  • One teaspoon of sea salt
  • Half a teaspoon of cumin
  • 200ml of extra virgin olive oil
  • 50ml of white wine vinegar
  • Half a teaspoon of paprika

To begin, allow the dried chillies to sit in just-boiled water (away from a heat source) for an hour. Then, as before, blend everything except the olive oil together – including your soaked chillies. To finish, slowly mix in your olive oil – and enjoy both your sauces with your traditional Lanzarote potatoes.


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