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'Divine' sweets and pastries

  • Handmade sweets and pastries © Turespaña

    Handmade sweets and pastries © Turespaña

  • Handmade sweets and pastries © Turespaña

    Handmade sweets and pastries © Turespaña

  • Handmade sweets and pastries © Turespaña

    Handmade sweets and pastries © Turespaña

  
  


"In many cities in Spain you'll find traditional sweets prepared in the kitchens of local convents. ..."

In many cities in Spain you'll find traditional sweets prepared in the kitchens of local convents. These are usually totally handmade, produced in limited quantities and are made with all the dedication typical of a life of seclusion. A delight for the palate which you won't regret discovering.

Marzipan, wine-flavoured doughnuts, fruit delights, truffles, egg cakes, doughnuts, cream puffs, tejas (crunchy biscuits), biscuits with nuts and yemas (egg yolks with syrup) are just a few of the sweets produced in monasteries and convents. These are mainly traditional recipes with a base of sugar, flour and egg that have been passed down over time. These sweets are still prepared today by monks and nuns in a completely artisan way. We recommend trying them yourself, as well as taking some home as gifts as a reminder of Spain.

Convent confectionary has become so popular in Spain that many products are now sold outside the monasteries or are given names alluding to the monastic life. Some examples are the huesos de santo (saint's bones), made mainly from a marzipan base, alfajores, many of the doughnuts typical of traditional festivals, and Christmas biscuits and shortbreads.

The best-known Spanish confections include various particularly delicious sweets such as the yemas of Avila, from the monastery of Santa Teresa de Jesús; the sweets of the Poor Clare sisters in their convents all over the country; the yemas of San Leandro, from the San Leandro convent in Seville; and the sweets of La Concepción, from the convent of Santa Clara in Alcázar de San Juan (Cáceres), among many others.

Things to remember:

This type of sweets can be bought in monasteries and cloistered convents in Spain, and must often be ordered in advance. In many cases they can be found in establishments throughout the municipal districts of each convent and sometimes over the Internet.
Every December Madrid hosts an annual fair for baked goods from monasteries and cloistered convents of Spain, entitled Expoclausura.
 

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